The victim of a brutal attack on New Year’s Eve has spoken out about the trauma he has faced since a stranger glassed him in a pub.
Declan McLaughlin was set upon by Christopher Darcy in December 2018 in an attack captured on CCTV at the Commercial Inn in Mossley.
The footage showed that as Darcy, 27, was tending to his girlfriend as she lay on the floor, Mr McLaughlin approached them to ask if everything was OK.
READ MORE: BREAKING: Seven men jailed for 216 years for murdering Salford student Aya Hachem in botched assassination
Suddenly, and without warning, Darcy grabbed a wine glass from nearby and smashed it into Mr McLaughlin’s head.
The pair got into a violent melee which saw Darcy push Mr McLaughlin towards a bay window, before he was quickly escorted out by other customers.
Appearing at Minshull Street Crown Court on Wednesday, Darcy was sentenced to three-and-a-half years imprisonment after eventually pleading guilty to wounding with intent.
Now, speaking to the Manchester Evening News, Declan has spoken of the trauma he still experiences day-to-day almost three years on.
“I’m still traumatised, it still doesn’t feel real,” he said.
“I have got counselling as it has affected me. It’s not left me, I’m not the same person I was.”
Declan recalled walking into the pub to see Darcy’s girlfriend lying on the floor.
The court was earlier told that there was a suggestion her drink had been spiked.
Manchester’s courts are some of the busiest in the country with a vast array of cases heard every week.
To keep up to date with how justice is being served across Greater Manchester subscribe to our free weekly M.E.N. Court News newsletter put together by our court reporters Andrew Bardsley and Amy Walker.
How do I sign up?
- First just click on this link to our newsletter sign-up centre.
- Once you’re there, put your email address where it says at the top, then tick the MEN Court News box. There are other newsletters available if you want them as well.
- When you’ve made your choice, hit Save Changes button at the bottom.
He said he went over to ‘see if she was OK’ and began chatting with Darcy, to which he said there was ‘nothing malicious’ vented between them.
“We were just having a conversation, then he just picked the glass up,” he said.
“It was all of a sudden, it was that first hit and then he was gone.”
Declan was left with a six centimetre cut to his cheek and a seven centimetre cut to his neck.
After the attack, the court heard in a victim personal statement by Declan that he lost his job due to stress and still has scarring on his face from where the glass hit him.
Darcy appeared at Minshull Street Crown Court
(Image: MEN Media)
He said: “Because of that, everything affected me. I was having panic attacks, I was breaking down in work.
“I had to have time off, I felt sick about what happened and my job had to let me off.”
Darcy’s defence counsel, Ben Williams, told the court that his client previously served in the armed forces in Afghanistan, and has since suffered with PTSD and ‘unresolved anger’.
He said Darcy was a ‘powder keg’ and had ‘seen things he shouldn’t have to see’.
A judge sentencing him told him he had used ‘swift’ and ‘aggressive’ movements.
Declan said he felt disappointed in the sentence, stating that the lowest prison sentence he could get was three years.
“He has previous convictions for assault which proves what type of person he is,” he said.
“It took me to go to court twice. He just gets six months more than the lowest he could have got and he will just do the 17 months or something, there’s nothing I can do.”
Since the attack, Declan has struggled to find the words to describe how it has affected him.
“Mentally I have suffered,” he said.
“I’m waiting for counselling and I am still on medication from the doctors.”
Darcy, of Somerset Road, was jailed for three years and six months, of which he will serve half in custody before being released on licence.
See the latest court and crime news in your area by receiving email updates.