Bail granted | 

Dublin man allegedly pushed ex-girlfriend into bathtub in a 'drowning motion', court hears

It was alleged the woman had drawn a bath for her one-year-old child

Dublin District Court

Tom Tuite

A 43-year-old Dublin man has been charged with attacking his ex-girlfriend by pushing her into a bathtub in a “drowning motion”.

Gareth Dowling from Hawthorn Mews, East Wall, was charged with assault causing harm to his former partner after climbing onto the balcony at her home in Dublin’s north inner city at the weekend.

He is also accused of criminal damage to her mobile phone during the alleged incident on Saturday night.

He appeared before Judge Cephas Power at Dublin District Court today and was granted bail with strict conditions.

Garda Ben Gallagher told the court Mr Dowling made no reply when charged. He objected to bail citing the seriousness of the offence.

The accused turned up at about 8pm and was agitated, the woman reported to gardai. It was alleged she tried to calm him down.

The garda told a contested bail hearing it was alleged the woman had drawn a bath for her one-year-old child. The bath was filled to six or eight inches.

It was alleged that during an argument the accused held their child with one arm and pushed his former girlfriend into the bath with the other, “in a drowning motion”.

Her phone was also thrown on the ground and smashed, the court heard.

The garda said further charges could be brought for making a threat to kill or cause serious harm. There was a voice recording from a phone message in which he allegedly said was going to murder her, Garda Gallaher said.

Defence solicitor Michael Kelleher put to the officer that this occurred during a tempestuous period for his client and the complainant, and the alleged threat was during an angry rant which was not meant. Garda Gallagher accepted that he had not witnessed the incident and that the accused had left when he arrived at the woman’s home.

The woman gave evidence and alleged the accused climbed onto her balcony and there was an argument. “Next thing I know I was in the bath,” she said, adding that she was terrified.

She agreed with the defence solicitor that it would give her peace of mind if bail terms were set with conditions banning his client from the areas around her home and workplace.

Mr Kelleher pleaded with the court to grant bail with that condition. He submitted that there was a minimum amount of water in the bath, which was not accepted by the arresting garda.

Judge Power set bail in Mr Dowling’s own bond €1,000 and required a €500 cash lodgement. He must sign on five days a week at his local Garda station, have no contact with the woman, and remain contactable by mobile phone.

Legal aid was granted to Mr Dowling who was ordered to appear again in September for directions from the Director of Public Prosecutions to be obtained.

He has not yet indicated how he will plead.

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