Hammer thug hit man after losing arm wrestle
A 24-year-old man with 36 criminal convictions has been jailed for attacking a fellow guest at a party with a hammer after an arm wrestling competition.
Darren Sloan was ordered to spend 12 months in custody followed by a further 18 months on licence upon his release for assaulting Aaron Rea in an early morning incident at house party on Belfast's Dunluce Avenue.
Mr Rea sustained bruising and swelling to his face and head in the attack, which he felt was carried out because he won the arm wrestling contest.
Jailing Sloan, from Durham House in the College Square area of Belfast, Judge Corinne Philpott QC told him the offence was "serious" and said: "You can't assault people just because you have had a few drinks and you don't like them, or they have beaten you in an arm wrestling game."
Prosecuting barrister Joseph Murphy told Belfast Crown Court that on March 8, 2011, Mr Rea had been drinking with a friend, who received a call inviting him to a party at Dunluce Avenue.
The two men arrived at the party around 1am on March 9 and at that time Sloan was living in a flat at the address.
The revellers at the party drank and arm-wrestled with each other.
At some point, Mr Rea's friend left the house to buy cigarettes and during his absence, Mr Rea was followed into the kitchen by Sloan where he was punched twice.
Mr Murphy said Sloan – who didn't know his victim – then left the kitchen and returned with a claw hammer. He hit Mr Rea on the back of the head with the weapon "several times".