GAA player who punched opponent spared prison term

Fri, Oct 12, 2012, 01:00

A GAA footballer who left another player with a fractured eye socket after punching him during a club game has been spared a prison term because of his previous good character.

Unemployed plasterer Keith Naylor (39) had just come on to the field as a substitute for Naomh Fionnbarra when he went up to Pádraic Ó Choncúir of Ballinteer St Johns and punched him in the face.

Naylor, of Dunmanus Road, Cabra, Dublin, pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to the assault causing harm to Mr Ó Choncúir at Marlay Park, Grange Road, Rathfarnham, on August 17th, 2011.

Judge Martin Nolan sentenced Naylor to three years’ imprisonment but suspended the sentence on condition that he keep the peace for three years and hand over €5,000 to the victim within the next year.

He said the rule of law extended to football matches and some players did not seem to realise this. Judge Nolan noted that Naylor was otherwise a good person who had worked as a sports mentor. He told Naylor his good record had saved him from prison.