Man felt 'weird air about place' before stabbing Hell Fire Club camper in throat, court hears
A 26-YEAR-OLD man felt there was "a weird air about the place" when he picked up a knife and stabbed a young camper in the throat at Dublin's Hell Fire Club, a court has heard.
Michael Corbett was refused bail by Dublin District Court after he was charged with assault causing harm to three teenagers, two males and a young woman, on Monday afternoon.
The incident took place at the Hell Fire Club, otherwise known as Montpelier Hill, a popular south Co Dublin site for hikers, surrounded by lands owned by the State forestry company Coillte.
Judge Michael Walsh acceded to a request from defence solicitor Tracy Horan to order an urgent psychiatric assessment of her client, who has an address at Woodbine Close, Raheny, north Dublin.
Garda Pauline Glennon told Judge Walsh on Wednesday that Mr Corbett made no reply when the charges were put to him at Tallaght garda station.
She objected to bail, citing the seriousness of the offence.
She said three campers, an 18-year-old woman, a male aged 18 and a 17-year-old boy, were at the Hell Fire Club at Killakee Road. The defendant, who was not known to them beforehand, travelled there by taxi and remained with them for a couple of hours. They also went picking logs.
Gda Glennon said it was alleged that the 18-year-old youth was "stabbed across his throat, in to his chest and was assaulted with a log of wood". She added that the young woman and the second youth were also assaulted with the log and punched in the face by a male that they later identified as the accused.
Mr Corbett was arrested at the scene a few hours later and made "certain admissions" when interviewed. The three teens were rushed to Tallaght hospital, where they were treated for a number of hours but were not kept overnight.
Gda Glennon agreed with defence solicitor Treacy Horan that Mr Corbett did not bring the knife and that it belonged to the campers.
Ms Horan asked the judge to note that her client was not familiar with the courts and has no prior criminal convictions.
She said that Mr Corbett "felt he was going to be attacked and there was a weird air about the place". She told the court he had serious underlying psychiatric problems and he claimed he was restraining the victim; there was a scuffle and this was something he did not want to happen.
Gda Glennon agreed the injured party brought the knife there but for camping purposes. She said Mr Corbett told gardai that he saw it on the ground and picked it up and put it to the youth's chest and the knife "sprung off him".
Ms Horan also said that her client was entirely co-operative at Tallaght garda station, would abide by strict bail conditions and was supported in court by family members. He is not currently working and is out of work on "long-term sick leave". However, he had worked for many years, she said.
Judge Walsh refused bail and remanded him in custody to appear at Cloverhill District Court on July 6. Dressed in a grey tracksuit, the accused sat silently throughout the hearing. He has not yet entered a plea to the charges.
Following submissions from Ms Horan, the judge agreed to order an immediate psychiatric assessment of Mr Corbett in custody and for the findings to be furnished to his legal team.