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Man arrested at computer desk in hostel after assault on fellow resident

Linen Court Hostel

A man who struck another resident at a hostel in Armagh, leaving him with a cut to his eye, will be sentenced next month.

Armagh Magistrates’ Court heard that the 31-year-old told police that he carried out the offence in self-defence.

Colin David Hawthorne, of no fixed abode, pleaded guilty to assault occasioning actual bodily harm on Tuesday, via videolink from Maghaberry.

Defence barrister Kevin O’Hare stated: “Mr Hawthorne is due for sentencing at Laganside for charges, including assault on police.

“He does have a record but those are mostly for offences of dishonesty; it is in your worship’s hands if you wish to deal with him today.”

Prosecution outlined the facts, that on July 28, at 12.35am, police were called to Linenhall hostel in Armagh to reports of an alleged assault.

The injured party claimed that he had been punched in the head by the defendant in the dining room of the property.

This had left the victim with a cut to his left eye along with swelling.

Police located Hawthorne in the dining room at a computer desk and he was subsequently arrested.

The defendant was taken to Dungannon Police station for interview, during which he admitted to striking the injured party, but claimed this had been in self-defence.

Mr O’Hare informed the court that Hawthorne was to turn 32 on Friday.

District Judge Paul Copeland stated: “Given his record and the nature of the offence I am minded to order a pre-sentence report”.

The case was adjourned until October 1 for sentencing.

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