Man who assaulted taxi driver jailed for three years

Judge Melanie Greally said assault was of ‘very vicious nature’

The court heard that while James Lynch was on bail for the assault on the taxi driver, he took part in the robbery of a man whose phone and wallet was stolen as he walked along Wood Quay.

The court heard that while James Lynch was on bail for the assault on the taxi driver, he took part in the robbery of a man whose phone and wallet was stolen as he walked along Wood Quay.

 

A Dublin man who assaulted a taxi driver after he refused to drive his wounded friend to hospital has been jailed for three years.

James Lynch (23) with an address at Dunard Park, Cabra, pleaded guilty to assault causing harm to taxi driver Edward Gallagher at Dame Street on February 14th, 2015.

He also pleaded guilty to robbing a man on Wood Quay on January 24th last year and to possession of a knife and producing a weapon at Smithfield on July 12th last year.

Dublin Circuit Criminal Court heard Mr Gallagher was driving his taxi through the city centre about 12.30am when he picked up three male passengers, including Lynch, who asked to be taken to hospital.

Garda David Sharkey agreed with prosecuting barrister, Stephen Byrne, that Mr Gallagher noticed one of the men was bleeding profusely. “He stated he didn’t want any blood in his car and he wasn’t going to take them anywhere,” Mr Byrne said.

Verbal argument

The men then started hitting Mr Gallagher and he fell to the ground, while they continued kicking him. Passers-by came to his aid and the men fled.

Lynch was arrested shortly afterwards but his two accomplices, including the man who was wounded, have never been identified, the court heard. Mr Gallagher attended the emergency department two days after the incident.

Handing down a three-year sentence on Tuesday, Judge Melanie Greally said the assault on Mr Gallagher was of a “very vicious nature” and led to him leaving his job as a taxi driver. “It shattered his confidence going about his work,” she said.

Robbery of a man

A few months later, Lynch threatened a man with a knife in his Smithfield apartment, after the man complained about Lynch and his friends smashing bottles in the area.

Lynch has 32 previous convictions, including misuse of drugs, public order offences, theft, robbery and possession of a knife.

Mark Lynam, defending, said Lynch was extremely remorseful for his actions that night and wished to extend his apologies to Mr Gallagher, who attended court previously.

Mr Lynam said his client had matured since the offences, had undergone an anger management course while in custody and had been promised a construction job upon his release.

Judge Greally backdated the sentence to July 2016, when Lynch went into custody.