A MAN who is to face charges of allegedly tying up another man, cutting off his ear and made him eat it, forced a Garda Inspector to give evidence under oath.
It was announced at Naas District Court last Thursday, August 16, that the DPP is preparing a charge against Mark Whyte, whose address is listed as 1613, Pairc Mhuire, Newbridge, of assault.
Mr. Whyte has been in custody since he was refused bail early last May and three weeks ago he appeared in court once again.
At that point the Director of Public Prosecutions had yet to come back to prosecuting Gardai with recommendations on how to proceed with a case against Mr. Whyte.
At the time, conscious that Mr. Whyte had already spent three months in custody. Judge Patrick Clyne said he would adjourn for two weeks and mark it peremptory against the State.
That meant that the DPP would have to show significant progress in processing the case, or risk having the charges withdrawn.
Last Thursday, Inspector Jim Doyle told the court that the DPP had decided on a charge and that the Book of Evidence was “coming along nicely”.
In the circumstances, Mr. Whyte, through his solicitor, Joe Cooney, applied for bail once again.
He has already been refused bail by the District and High Court. Gardai have objected to it on the basis that he may flee the country, the seriousness of the charge and the possibility that he he might interfere with witnesses.
The latter concern arose out of the fact that when arrested, Mr. Whyte had warned: “This won’t get near a court, I’ll make sure of that”.
Inspector Doyle once again objected to bail for many of the same reasons, including the fact that he had a history of not turning up in court.
And he told the court that the alleged victim had come to him saying he was fear of Mr. Whyte and that associates of Mr. Whyte had been in contact with him.
“He (the alleged victim) has approached us twice,” the Inspector told the court.
Noting that the Inspector, who was representing the case, had not been sworn in as a witness,
Mr. Whyte insisted that the Inspector take the oath and give evidence from the witness box.
The Inspector duly obliged, saying that the alleged victim had come to him twice in the recent past expressing his fear of Mr. Whyte, and alleging that he had been contacted by associates of Mr. Whyte.
“He’s so in fear, that he has contemplated withdrawing his complaint,” Inspector Doyle said.
“My client will say that that was all made up by the alleged injured party,” Mr. Cooney said.
“Well, I took the evidence from the injured party myself,” Inspector Doyle replied.
In the end, Mr. Cooney’s client didn’t say anything.
He did not get into the witness box to refute the Inspector’s claims and the Judge noted this in particular.
Mr. Cooney offered that if granted bail, his client would abstain from intoxicants, sign on relgularly and a number of other conditions, but Judge Cline said he was “happy with the evidence given in court today and I refuse bail”.
The case will appear before the courts again in a matter of weeks.