A father and son attacked a former friend with a hammer and a pick handle in front of the victim’s wife and five-year-old granddaughter as part of an ongoing feud, a court has heard.
Michael Reilly Senior and his son Michael F Reilly Junior were jailed for 40 months and 20 months respectively at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court for the assault on Martin Maughan.
During the same incident, Reilly Snr also bit Mr Maughan on the ear, after ramming Mr Maughan’s jeep three times with his van, over what the court heard was “bad blood” between the two families.
Mr Reilly Snr (49) of Ennis Lane, Swords, pleaded guilty to endangerment and assault causing harm at the roundabout outside the Pavilions Shopping Centre on the Malahide Road, Swords, Co Dublin on July 30 last.
His son Michael Jr (22), of the same address, pleaded guilty to assault causing harm on the same occasion.
In his ruling [on Monday] Judge Martin Nolan set a headline sentence of five and a half years for Reilly Snr on the endangerment charge, and a three-year sentence for Reilly Jnr for assault.
However, Judge Nolan listed several mitigating factors including the Reillys’ guilty pleas, their remorse and their particularly tragic backgrounds.
The court heard Mr Maughan suffered bruising and soft tissue injuries in the attack.
Garda Michael Doherty told Dara Hayes BL, prosecuting, that he arrived on the scene to find Mr Maughan’s jeep facing the wrong way on the road while his five-year-old granddaughter sat on the kerb.
The child was screaming and crying, but otherwise uninjured.
Mr Maughan told gardaí his jeep had been followed by Reilly Snr in a van, who drove up beside him waving a stick out the window and shouting something along the lines of “you’ll be getting that”.
Reilly Snr then rammed Mr Maughan’s jeep three times, causing it to spin around. Mr Maughan said he had to drag the child back into the jeep as she was nearly falling out the door.
He said when he finally stopped his jeep, Reilly Jnr, who had been driving a separate van, used a hammer to smash Mr Maughan’s jeep window and deliver about ten or eleven blows to his torso.
Meanwhile, Reilly Snr attacked Mr Maughan with a pick handle and also bit him on the ear.
Reilly Snr has nine previous convictions, mostly for road traffic offences, while Reilly Jnr has ten, including theft and handling stolen property.
Garda Doherty agreed with counsel that there had been “bad blood” between the families in relation to a previous assault.
Pieter Le Vert BL, defending Reilly Snr, said his client was aged 15 when he witnessed the murder of his father with a billhook. Reilly Snr suffers from PTSD, anxiety, depression and panic attacks. He also has mobility issues due to a broken hip.
John Byrne BL, defending Reilly Jnr, said there was a serious fire at his client’s mobile home last year during which his pregnant wife suffered 23 per cent burns to her body. The court heard Reilly Jnr also suffers from mental health issues as a result of this fire.