Three men from the Creggan area of Londonderry were sentenced at the city's Crown Court yesterday after they admitted assaulting a Co Donegal student at Foyle Street on February 20 of last year.
The victim, Barry McNulty from Lifford, was on a night out with friends in Derry when he was attacked.
In the assault, which was believed to have followed an earlier altercation, Judge Piers Grant was told that Mr McNulty was punched twice by his attackers. He then fell to the ground and banged his head off the roadway, sustaining a swelling of the brain.
The impact knocked him unconscious and also caused his brain to move slightly to the left. After he was treated for his injuries in Altnagelvin Hospital in Derry he had five weeks’ treatment in Belfast's Royal Victoria Hospital.
A prosecution barrister told the court that he accepted the three defendants did not intend to cause the serious brain injuries sustained by Mr McNulty.
The three men who carried out the attack were Neil James Coyle (26), from Carrickreagh Gardens, Gary Gerard McDermott (27), from Creggan Heights, and Patrick Joseph Ward (32), from Rathmore Road. All three were sentenced to one hundred hours of community service and placed on probation for 18 months.