Keating is a Complete Thug? Nine Months, Soft Sentence?

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Man involved in New Years Day fight that spilled into Dublin hotel lobby jailed for nine months

Judge Martin Nolan said Graham Keating (23) had “escaped custody so far but not now”

Graham Keating
Graham Keating — © Paddy Cummins – PCPhoto.ie

Eimear DoddSunday World

Thu 13 Oct 2022 at 17:38

A man who became involved in a fight that spilled into the lobby of a Dublin hotel has been handed a nine-month prison sentence.

Graham Keating (23) pleaded guilty to affray at the Clayton Hotel, Santry on January 1, 2020.

Keating with an address at Bunratty rd., Coolock, Dublin has 18 previous convictions, primarily for minor public order offences.

Handing down a nine-month prison sentence, Judge Martin Nolan said the accused had “escaped custody so far but not now”.

Judge Martin Nolan said Keating has a “severe difficulty with drink” and when intoxicated, the accused’s behaviour is a cause of nuisance.

Graham Keating
Graham Keating — © Paddy Cummins – PCPhoto.ie

Garda Jessica Hardington told Dublin Circuit Criminal Court on Thursday that Keating was seen at 12pm moving from behind a bus shelter outside the Clayton Hotel towards a group of four men.

The accused appeared to be trying to pick a fight with the men, who walked away. Keating followed them, pushing, shoving and throwing punches.

The situation escalated and at one stage eight men were involved in a fight outside the busy bus shelter.. The group of men began to move towards the hotel.

Gda Hardington said the hotel duty manager went to the hotel lobby, which was full, where he met the accused. The manager attempted to reason with Keating who became angry, shouting “get out of my way or I’ll stab you”.

Another young man entered the hotel carrying a stick and tried to reason with Keating, but this was unsuccessful. Keating tried to grab the stick and was also swinging a grey jumper around.

When hotel staff tried to intervene, he said he would “stab them”. Keating then left the lobby and ran off before gardai arrived at 12.20pm.

Gardai followed Keating, who then threw himself on the ground and started kicking his legs. Keating was arrested and identified himself on CCTV footage. Keating told gardai that he believed the group of men were recording him.

He went to ask them to stop, but had not approached them in an aggressive manner. The accused said he went to the hotel for his own safety.

Gda Hardington accepted defence counsel’s contention that Keating had been drinking on New Year’s Eve and into the following day.

The investigating garda agreed with defence counsel that Keating apologised for how he spoke to hotel staff when interviewed by gardai. Keating was injured in the fight and had a swollen face when caught by gardai.

In mitigation, defence counsel said her client had gone to the hotel to get away from the fight as he was afraid. Other individuals who were involved in the fight were not caught by gardai.

Defence counsel said Keating is very remorseful for his actions. He had been drinking and had engaged with others to ask them to stop recording him, who came back against him with aggression.

Keating had sought to remove himself from the situation. Keating has one child and is not working, but is looking for work. Defence counsel said intoxication was a factor in Keating’s behaviour, but he had learnt his lesson.

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