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16th Mar 2016

Court hears that Ireland star Jeff Hendrick was “out of it” when he dragged clubber from taxi

"He just lost it"

Darragh Murphy

A trial involving Republic of Ireland international Jeff Hendrick began in Dublin District Court on Tuesday.

Football coach Darren McDermott has claimed that he was left in fear for his life after his jaw was broken in an attack involving the Derby midfielder, according to a court report from Andrew Phelan.

A court heard that Hendrick from Kilmore, north Dublin, followed McDermott before surrounding his cab with a group of others and dragged him into the street.

Judge John Cheatle ruled that the case was too serious to be heard at Dublin District Court, with Hendrick charged with violent disorder while co-accused Jonathan Doran of Kilmore Crescent, Artane has been charged with assault as well as violent disorder.

Both men have pleaded not guilty.

In court, McDermott explained how the atmosphere changed “quite quickly” after an initially pleasant exchange with Hendrick at Dublin’s Krystle nightclub

“Jeff just turned, his whole demeanour changed, he wasn’t happy with me being in their company,” he said.

“He just lost it,” he added.

Hendrick and his group of friends were asked to leave by security but that he “had a go again” outside the nightclub.

“Ultimately, he was looking to hit me or assault me, you could see it in his demeanour that he was trying to get at me, I was quite intimidated,” he said.

McDermott ran into a taxi to get away from any potential violence but that an “out of it” Hendrick approached the door of the vehicle.

“Jeff Hendrick opened the door and forcibly pulled me out of the taxi,” said Mr McDermott.

“Next thing I remember I was on the ground,” he said. “I don’t know how I hit the ground, but straight away people laid into me, kicking me in the head and ribs,” he said. “I had my hands over my head trying to protect myself.”

Gardaí arrived and the crowd dispersed but McDermott had been left with a badly broken jaw and broken teeth.

Judge John Cheatle, after hearing the evidence, refused jurisdiction and ruled that the case go forward to the Circuit Court such was the seriousness of of the allegations.

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