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09 Aug 2022

Son abusive at mother's wake in Nenagh

breached barring order

Son abusive at mother's wake in Nenagh

Nenagh District Court

A man who breached a barring order while mourning at his mother’s funeral, became aggressive towards Gardaí, heard a sitting of Nenagh District Court.

Insp Eddie Golden told Judge John King that James Tuohy came out of his premises at 5 Cormac Drive, Nenagh, and started shouting, “calling names” and banging the front door of nearby 1 Cormac Drive, on July 21 this year.

A barring order was in place preventing Mr Tuohy from being in contact with his estranged partner, Anne Marie Tuohy, heard the judge.

Mr Tuohy “kicked the front door” and called those inside “bastards”. The gardaí were contacted. Tuohy had been separated from his wife for a period of time prior to the incident, and had moved to Dublin, before moving back. Tuohy “reacted badly” to the presence of gardaí.

However, he had consented to the barring order being put in place.

The incident came to light after Mr Tuohy's son, aged 19, made a complaint.

Anne Marie Tuohy gave evidence that she was in fear at the time. Mr Morrissey's solicitor put it to Ms Tuohy that she had put the incident in place so Mr Tuohy would be “locked up.”

“This incident did not happen the way you say it did,” alleged the solicitor. “This was an opportunity to have your husband detained, and then to be free to attend the funeral with your family members.” There had been “no trouble” between the various parties since that day, but there was “bad blood” between them, added the solicitor.

Garda Liam Hayes said he attended the scene in Nenagh at about 6pm. The call was to 1 Cormac Drive in relation to a domestic incident. He spoke to Anne Marie Tuohy and she said her son ran back into the kitchen “in fear of her husband,” James Tuohy.

“She said he started banging and kicking at the front door. She said she feared for her life.”

The funeral was taking place in 5 Cormac Drive. As the garda arrived, Mr Tuohy was in a “very agitated” condition in the hallway. Garda Hayes spoke to him and put to him the allegations Anne Marie Tuohy had made.

At about 6.30pm Garda Hayes made the decision to arrest James Tuohy for the offence of breaching a barring order.

“He resisted arrest. I had to utilise pepper spray to affect the arrest,” said Garda Hayes. Tuohy was conveyed to Nenagh Garda Station and charged.

A solicitor said the incident happened “in the midst of a funeral, and very close to Ms Tuohy's home”.

Mr Tuohy's reaction was “understandable given the circumstances. He believed somebody was taking him from his mother's funeral.”

Mr Tuohy had alcohol taken and was “very aggressive and agitated,” said Garda Hayes. “He was agitated before I even dealt with him.”

In court, James Tuohy said he consented to the barring order, and “wanted to stay out of trouble.” Under questioning, Mr Tuohy said he did not want to return to Cormac Drive. Tuohy said he was waking his mother at his home, and gave instructions that his wife was not to attend the funeral. His son had wanted to say some words to him “not in violence” and it was a “very emotional time.”

Tuohy maintained he did not put his wife in fear. “I never went on to the premises,” he said. “I went back to the house. It was my mother's funeral. I stayed by my mother all my life.”

Tuohy had to live in Thurles after leaving 5 Cormac Drive, but there had been no incidents since.

“I have no intention of going near Cormac Drive,” he told the judge.

Mr Tuohy said he had “four or five” beers that night. He could see his son phoning the gardaí, and later met them in the hallway where the arrest took place.

Judge King said he was satisfied Tuohy had banged the door, and put Ms Tuohy in fear. Tuohy has 70 previous convictions, relating to road traffic matters, breaching a protection order, criminal damage, and public order.

Tuohy had paid €180 in compensation for the door. Tuohy's solicitor said he has a “bad history” but now wants “nothing to do with Cormac Drive.” He has left the family home, that he assigned to his daughter. “He is living out of town. He wants to move on,” added the solicitor.

Judge King adjourned the case to January 18 next, for a probation report and to assess Tuohy's suitability to carry out 100 hours of community service in lieu of two months prison.

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