Kildare man who assaulted ex-partner was in toxic relationship

Has been in custody since St Stephen's Day

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Kildare man who assaulted ex-partner was in toxic relationship

The case was heard at Naas District Court today

A Naas man who has pleaded guilty to assaulting his former partner was in a toxic relationship, his solicitor told Naas District Court earlier today, Thursday, January 3.

Darren Murphy, 23, with an address listed as 361 Sunday’s Well, Blessington Road, Naas, has been in custody since he assaulted his former partner in the early hours of St Stephen’s Day at a home in a Naas estate.

The court heard that the woman invited Mr Murphy to her home that night and that following a disagreement he had placed his hands around her neck as if to choke her. He also pulled her hair, and bit her hands.

Although she suffered bruising she did not seek medical attention and declined to give a victim impact statement.

“She invited him into the house,” Tim Kennelly, representing the defendant, told the court. “Just to put you in the full picture Judge,” he said, adding that it was a turbulent and toxic relationship.

Mr Kennelly said that the pair had had drinks together. He said that when he initially met his client he had scratches on his face. “It could be that she instigated this.”

Judge Desmond Zaidan remarked: “There is no excuse for this.” Mr Kennelly said he felt that both parties were at fault.

“I’ll just stop Mr Kennelly now before he gets into trouble,” the Judge said.

Mr Kennelly explained that both parties were “full of drink”.

“Should he not simply have walked away?” Judge Zaidan asked.

“He should, of course.”

Judge Zaidan was particularly concerned that one of the victim’s children witnessed the aftermath of the incident, and the effect it could have had on them. 

Mr Kennelly said that it was a row that went too far and totally “out of character” for the young man who has no previous convictions. “He’s spent a week in custody since St Stephen’s Day and that’s where nobody wants to be,” he said.

“It was ridiculous, stupid. I regret it,” the defendant told the court.

“I can impose a sentence, but it won’t do society any good,” Judge Zaidan remarked. He was of the view that the unless issues were properly addressed the same could happen with the next woman the defendant became involved in.

He asked the Probation Service to assess the defendant in custody, for the potential for a restorative justice programme.

He stressed that his involvement with the Probation Service would “have to be meaningful” and remanded him in custody to January 24 for progress.