‘Bullyboy’ bouncer will pay €5,000 to customer he threw on ground
A GREYSTONES bouncer who picked up a man and threw him to the ground after refusing him entry into a Bray night club had his case adjourned until July to allow him pay compensation of €5,000.
Andrew Flynn who hails from Greystones but whose address was given as C/O Koo Nightclub, Strand Road, Bray received a three month suspended prison sentence in the district court after he was convicted of assaulting Larry Betts outside the Koo nightclub on July 27, 2005.
Mr. Betts said he had a few drinks in the Martello Bar on the night and then went to go to the Koo Nightclub which to meet friends. Flynn was working as a bouncer on the night and said he couldn’t go into the club. When Mr. Betts asked him why he couldn’t go in Flynn told him he didn’t have to give a reason.
Mr. Betts then waited outside the club to see if he could see his friends because he didn’t know if they had arrived yet. Flynn came over to him and told him he would have to leave or he would call the gardai. Mr. Betts told Flynn he wasn’t in the way and Flynn replied ‘you are leaving here now or I will drag you out’.
Flynn, Mr. Betts said, picked him up and threw him on the ground putting his knee on Mr. Betts’ chest and his hand on his windpipe saying ‘ are you going to leave here, are you going to leave here?’
He said he was then caught from behind and dragged out of the pub. Mr. Betts who is now 45 said he was very traumatised by the assault. When he rang the gardai to make a complaint he was told they had already received two calls about the incident.
Mr. Betts said his back was ‘severely grazed’ following the assault. He denied being ‘unreasonable’ on the night.
Witness Noel O’Reilly said he didn’t know Mr. Betts on the night and had been drinking in the Martello bar when he heard a commotion outside the Koo. He had a good line of vision to the club and saw Mr. Betts being thrown to the ground and Flynn kneeling on his chest. He said two men dragged Mr. Betts ‘in a very inhuman way’ onto the path outside the Martello and at this stage Mr. O’Reilly rang the gardai. He said he didn’t see Mr. Betts do anything to warrant this treatment.
Garda Darren McLoughlin said he had spoken to Mr. Betts on the night and while he had drink taken he wasn’t intoxicated and was able to have a normal conversation. He said he had been assault- ed by Flynn and there was a large graze on his back consistent with being dragged on tarmac. The following day Garda McLoughlin spoke to Flynn about the incident and Flynn said he would make a statement but he never did.
Under cross examination Garda McLoughlin said that Flynn had told him that the CCTV system didn’t cover the area where the assault occurred and there was no footage of the incident.
In his own evidence Flynn said on the night in question Mr. Betts had been intoxicated and was refused entry. He said Mr. Betts was obstructing the entrance and he ‘gently moved him to one side’. Mr. Betts, he said, fell to the ground and wouldn’t get up. Gareth Brady, the manager of the club, said Mr. Betts had to be moved as he was obstructing the entrance and he and another bouncer, Keith Griffin, picked him up and started to carry him but Mr. Betts kicked out at Mr. Griffin and fell. He was picked back up and carried off the premises.
Under cross examination from state solicitor Rory Benville, Flynn said he had never been informed there had been any allegation made against him and denied being asked about CCTV footage.
Keith Griffin who was working on the night with Flynn said the area would have been covered by the CCTV system. The court heard Mr. Brady was not in court to give evidence.
‘This was nothing less than an unprovoked assault by a bullyboy who came into court making out that Garda McLoughlin and Mr. O’Reilly were not telling the truth. It defies belief,’ said Judge Griffin.
He said he was satisfied that ‘Mr. Betts was thrown to the ground and dragged on to the street and dumped there’.
The court heard Flynn had no previous convictions and the incident had been ‘wholly out of character. Following a discussion with Flynn his counsel said Flynn could pay €5,000 compensation to Mr. Betts within six months which Mr. Betts was happy with if coupled with an apology.
On Flynn’s behalf he ‘unreservedly apologised for any inconvenience, loss or pain Mr. Betts suffered from the incident’.
Affirming the District Xourt order of a three-month suspended prison sentence Judge Griffin adjourned the case until July 7 to allow him gather €5,000 compensation plus witness expenses of € 400.