Armed himself with a golf club

Court
Court

When he thought he was going to be assaulted by people who were banging on his front door a 32-year-old man armed himself with a golf club, Craigavon Magistrates Court heard last Friday.

Jonathan Byrne, Alexandra Square, Lurgan, admitted possession of an offensive weapon in a public place on March 13 this year.

The court heard that at 9pm police went to the area to deal with another matter and saw the defendant standing in the street holding a golf club.

He alleged that a person had threatened to kill him. Police seized the golf club.

Byrne told police he had it to protect himself and it was to frighten off males he believed were going to assault him.

A barrister representing the defendant said her client, who lived in the care of Praxis in sheltered accommodation, had been assaulted earlier in the day and had phoned the police.

She added there were boys banging on his door trying to get him out of the house. He didn’t do anything with the golf club he just had it in his hands.

“He was simply standing on the street with the golf club,” said the lawyer who added there had been no suggestion that he had been drinking.

Byrne was also on the court list for stealing a bottle of wine and a pack of beer worth £11.10 from Tescos on July 16, 2017.

Sentencing in this case had been deferred from a previous court.

District Judge, Mrs Bernie Kelly, said that Byrne’s record was entirely alcohol related and he can not have his medical condition and take alcohol.

She added that when she deferred sentence she told him he should not come under any adverse police attention and he now had a conviction in the deferment period.

A solicitor representing Byrne in this case said his client had been subject to a two year probation order which had expired and there had been no further difficulties.

He explained his client had substance and alcohol issues but appeared to have taken significant steps in dealing with his problems and what happened was an aberration.

Judge Kelly said there was nothing to demonstrate to her that he had been drug and alcohol free and had been taking his medication.

She adjourned the cases until October 5 to obtain an updated pre-sentence report.

“If he is serious about remaining in the community he has to stick to his regime,” added the judge.