Circus Vegas sued over injury

Thursday, February 14th, 2008

Irish Times

A man who claimed he had been head-butted by an elephant has settled a personal injury claim against a circus for an undisclosed amount of damages. Circus Vegas chained elephants

Derek Dillon (47), a warehouse worker, sued John and Stephen Courtney, who trade as Circus Vegas, Earl Street, Longford, for up to €38,000.

Following talks between Hugh O’Keeffe, for the Courtneys, and Sasha Gayer, for Mr Dillon, Judge Gerard Griffin was told in the Circuit Civil Court that the matter had been settled and could be struck out.

Mr Dillon, Springdale Road, Raheny, Dublin, had claimed that one of the elephants had struck him on his forehead with one of its tusks when he attended the circus grounds at Blunden Drive, Coolock, Dublin, in July 2006. He suffered a laceration to his forehead which had to be stitched.

Mr Dillon claimed he had been knocked to the ground by the elephant and left shocked and shaken up. He had been left with a permanent scar on his forehead.

The Courtneys and Circus Vegas had entered a defence in the proceedings denying negligence or breach of duty and, while conceding that Dillon had slipped and fallen, denied they were responsible for his fall or that it had been caused by an elephant.

The defendants claimed that if Mr Dillon had been butted or struck by the elephant’s tusk, which they denied, he had caused himself to come into contact with it.

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