Former garda awarded €300,000 over injury
A man who was punched in the head while a serving garda as he released a man from a Garda station was awarded more than €300,000 in damages by the High Court yesterday.
Ms Justice Mary Irvine said James Lynn, who was stationed at Castlebar station but has since been discharged from the Garda due to ill-health, had lost the career he fought so hard to get into.
As a result, Mr Lynn had lost his status in society and his injuries affected him every day, she said. The case was brought under the Garda Compensation Act by Mr Lynn who had been attached to Castlebar station at the time of the assault on June 23rd, 2001.
The court heard Mr Lynn released a prisoner from holding cells who then went to the day room. Mr Lynn later escorted him to the foyer.
As the man stepped on to the porch, he suddenly turned around and punched the garda in the left eye and forehead area, the court was told. The severe blow made Mr Lynn stumble backwards.
Ms Justice Irvine said the area around his eye became swollen and bruised, which lasted a number of weeks. He suffered headaches linked to post traumatic stress disorder.
The judge found Mr Lynn still suffered anxiety. She was satisfied he was not “a malingerer” but a committed and conscientious member of the force unlikely to have given up his career were it not for the injury. The €301,242 award includes compensation for loss of earnings to date and into the future.
The court heard Mr Lynn received compensation in the past over two separate assault incidents in the course of duty.