Offender who headbutted pub owner is sentenced

Thursday 16th June 2022 10:34 am
Exterior view of the Isle of Man Courthouse in Douglas - (Isle of Man Newspapers )

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An offender has been sentenced to community service after punching and headbutting a pub owner.

Sean Thomas Patrick O’Neill also injured the man’s thumb, which required surgery, during a scuffle as he was ejected from the Riddler under the Nest

The 33-year-old pleaded guilty to assault causing actual bodily harm and disorderly behaviour on licensed premises.

Magistrates ordered him to do 200 hours’ unpaid work and to pay £200 compensation to the victim.

We previously reported that O’Neill, who lives at Ballahane Close, Port Erin, was at the Riddler under the Nest in Station Road in Port Erin on September 12 last year.

At 1.30am he was near the pool table when a man who was playing pool knocked into him.

O’Neill was said to have started slapping the man on the back of the head several times and words were exchanged before bar staff intervened.

The owner of the pub, who was also there at the time but not working, then tried to assist in removing O’Neill from the premises.

He puts his arms on either side of O’Neill, which then prompted O’Neill to lunge forward and headbutt him twice before punching him in the face.

The pub owner suffered an injury to the bridge of his nose as well as swelling to his face and lips.

He also later found that he had damage to the ulna collateral ligament in his thumb which required surgery.

After being arrested, during a police interview, O’Neill said he could not remember the incident due to his level of intoxication.

When shown CCTV footage he was apologetic.

Defence advocate Stephen Wood said: ‘We accept it was not an insignificant incident that occurred.

As your worships will have heard before, drinks in, wits out. The owner was not working at the time. He was enjoying a few drinks at his own premises.

‘Nevertheless, we still accept it’s a serious incident.’

Mr Wood siad that O’Neill had been in touch with victim and had apologised to him.

‘That doesn’t excuse my client’s actions. My client’s actions were terrible,’ said the advocate.

Mr Wood handed in letters of reference for his client which he said showed that the offence was out of character for recent years.

The advocate said that O’Neill worked six days a week and at the time of the offence had suffered a family bereavement which had affected him badly.

Magistrates also ordered O’Neill to pay £50 prosecution costs which he will pay, along with the compensation, within one month.

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