Victim ‘punched unconscious’ in bar

Published Tuesday, 19 August 2014
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A Londonderry man has been remanded in custody accused of punching his alleged victim who is in intensive care following emergency brain surgery.

Victim ‘punched unconscious’ in bar
Gordon was remanded into custody on Tuesday. (© UTV)

A detective constable told the city's Magistrate's Court on Tuesday that Barry Gordon Whittle, from Clareen Drive in the Strathfoyle area of the city, caused injuries to his 31-year-old victim with one punch, which included fractures to the skull, eye socket and cheekbone.

The police witness was opposing bail for the defendant, who is charged with causing grievous bodily harm with intent to Rory Forrester in Duke's Bar in Duke Street in the Waterside area.

The detective constable said that the victim of the incident, which was recorded on internal CCTV, was taken to Altnagelvin Hospital but then was later transferred to the Royal Victoria Hospital in Belfast where he underwent emergency surgery for bleeding of the brain.

He has since been taken off a ventilator but remains in the hospital's intensive care unit.

The officer said that Gordon has 67 previous convictions, four of them for serious assaults.

Prior to the incident he had been drinking with the injured party who started kicking over bar stools.

One witness told the police that he heard the Gordon saying "I will sort this out", before punching the victim once and knocking him unconscious.

The court heard the defendant then left the bar but was arrested several hours later in Primrose Street.

Applying for bail, a defence solicitor said his client believed he was acting in self-defence when he punched the victim.

He said Gordon sustained a serious brain injury several years ago and he wanted to avoid being hit by the injured party.

The solicitor said the defendant was also the victim of several serious so-called punishment beatings in the past.

He said the defendant's mother had recently been diagnosed as being terminally ill and had only three to four months to live.

Refusing bail, District Judge Barney McElholm said the defendant had "decided to hit first and ask questions later".

He added: "I consider this man to be a serious risk to other members of the public. He has a very violent record."

Gordon was remanded in custody to appear in court again on 11 September for a video-link hearing.

© UTV News
Comments Comments
PB in Belfast wrote (165 days ago):
1 punch incidents should be treated as attempted murder and this might act as a deterrent because people need to realise the consequences of their actions
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