Alleged victim of sulky ramming tells court he ‘can’t remember’ attack

The Limerick Court Complex in Mulgrave Street

A MAN who had identified to Gardaí a group of men allegedly involved in ramming him and a horse-drawn sulky cart off a roadway, and attacking him with implements on the side of the road four years ago, told the court that he had identified “the wrong men”.

Darren Wallace (37), of Kishyquirk, Ballysimon, County Limerick, giving evidence in the trial of two Limerick brothers, Vincent Collopy and Jonathan Collopy, told the Circuit Court in Limerick that he “could not remember” who attacked him on the day in question.

Before the courts this Wednesday (January 31), Darren Wallace agreed with State prosecution counsel, John O’Sullivan BL, that he had made a statement during a video-recorded interview with Gardaí the day after the alleged incident in which he identified Vincent Collopy as the driver of an SUV that rammed him off the road as he steered a sulky.

Darren Wallace also agreed that he told Gardaí that Jonathan Collopy, and another man who is not before the court, got out of the SUV and beat him on the side of the road with a stick and a hurley.

However, Darren Wallace told the court on Wednesday that he had mistakenly identified the two accused and the third man. He said he “can’t remember” the events now.

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“I can’t remember what I done three days ago, never mind four years ago … I received a head injury and I was on a heavy dose of medication, so I wasn’t in my right mind … It was all a mistake,” Darren Wallace told Mr O’Sullivan.

Mr Wallace’s statement to Gardaí on April 8, 2020, was read to the jury in which he said an Audi Q7 SUV, which he alleged was being driven by Vincent Collopy, “rammed” him off the road and that Jonathan Collopy and another man got out of the jeep and “started flogging the sh*t out of me”.

“I must have been hit over 20 times … Vincent Collopy must have turned the jeep around and they took off, Jonathan Collopy stuck his head out of the window and stuck his finger at me and shouted ‘you’re dead, you’re dead’,” Darren Wallace said in his statement, which he agreed he had signed.

He told Gardai he was “pumping blood down the left side of my face” as the SUV drove away from the scene and that he had known the two Collopy brothers for over 10 years at the time.

However, on Wednesday, under cross examination from Jonathan Collopy’s barrister, Mr Wallace agreed that “Jonathan Collopy played no hand, act, or part in the assault”.

Jamie Wallace, a nephew of Darren Wallace, who the State claims was a witness and was allegedly assaulted by Vincent Collopy, told the court that he couldn’t remember anything of the events.

Jamie Wallace told the court he could not remember making a statement to Detective Garda Pat Whelan, of Roxboro Road Garda Station, the following day.

When asked by Mr O’Sullivan what his date of birth was, Jamie Wallace replied: “I can’t remember my date of birth.”

“You can’t remember anything at all?” Mr O’Sullivan asked the witness. He replied, “No, I can’t.”

The State has alleged that Vincent Collopy (44), with an address at St Ita’s Street, St Mary’s Park, Limerick City, drove an SUV into Mr Wallace’s cart, ramming it off the road, and that Vincent Collopy assaulted Mr Wallace causing him harm.

The State has also alleged Vincent Collopy assaulted Jamie Wallace at the scene.

Vincent Collopy has pleaded not guilty to all four charges against him, which include one count of endangerment, one count of dangerous driving, one count of assault causing harm, and one count of assault.

His sibling, Jonathan Collopy (37), with an address at St Senan’s Street, St Mary’s Park, Limerick City, has denied all two charges against him, which include one count of assaulting Darren Wallace causing him harm, and one count of producing an offensive weapon, namely a stick, during the alleged incident.