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Man accused of attacking mum’s partner with an axe as he slept freed on bail

Court heard the alleged injured party had two serious lacerations and had to be lifted by Air Ambulance to the Royal Victoria Hospital

Newry courthouse police

A Warrenpoint man who is accused of hitting his mother’s then partner with an axe has been released on bail.

The 27-year-old’s barrister commented that his client had made a “confession” during interview with police, as it was heard the defendant also claimed to have thrown the alleged weapon in the sea.

Mark Quinn, of Ganna Way, who faces one charge of attempted murder, did not appear as a bail application was made on his behalf at Newry Magistrates’ Court on Wednesday.

A constable outlined that on October 24, at 8am, police received a report from ambulance staff after they attended an address on Ganna Way and were treating a male with severe injuries to his arm.

Officers arrived and spoke to the male. He claimed to have been lying down when his partner’s son, the defendant, had struck him with an axe on the left upper arm.

The alleged injured party had two serious lacerations and had to be lifted by Air Ambulance to the Royal Victoria Hospital for treatment.

When police arrived the defendant was not present but he was later seen in the Newry area at around 9.25am. He was subsequently arrested and his vehicle was seized.

During interview, Quinn accepted he had struck the alleged injured party with an axe and had initially assisted his mother in performing first aid.

He then claimed that he had driven to Greencastle, where he had thrown the axe into the sea. Police searched the area but were unable to locate this item.

The constable informed court that bail was objected as it was felt there was a risk of interference with witnesses, with Quinn’s proposed address being with his mother.

She added: “This was an extremely serious assault. It was unprovoked and the victim had been asleep prior to it.”

Defence barrister Kevin Magill outlined that the injured party and the defendant’s mother were no longer together, adding that the alleged victim now lived “a considerable distance from Warrenpoint”.

He stated: “He basically made a confession during interview. He also goes into the reasons and circumstances but I will not go into those today.

“He accepts that it is inevitable, if he is granted bail today, he will spend further time in custody when sentenced, but he wants to make things right with his family before he goes back inside.”

Mr Magill added that the injuries suffered by the alleged victim were not as bad as first feared.

Deputy District Judge Peter Prenter commented that his concern was over the defendant returning to live with his mother, who could be called upon for evidence.

Mr Magill stated that there was “nothing controversial” in Quinn’s mother’s statement. He added that she could even be called as a “defence witness” giving an account of the prior evening’s events.

Deputy District Judge Prenter said that this had “just tipped” to the point of bail being granted.

Quinn was released on his own bail of £500 with a condition to have no contact with the alleged injured party.

The case was adjourned until January 20 for an update.

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