28 May 2022

Templemore man verbally abused girlfriend in public

Thurles District Court

Templemore man verbally abused girlfriend in public

Thurles District Court

A Templemore man who verbally abused his partner in public, was convicted of a public order offence at Thurles District Court.

On March 26, 2020, Garda Martin Butler received a call regarding a disturbance in Church Street, Templemore.

Garda Butler observed Thomas McInerney, of 16 Church Street, Templemore, with his girlfriend, who were arguing on the side of the road. Garda Butler said he overheard Mr McInerney shout at his girlfriend: “get away from me you stupid bitch, you f**king fool.”

Members of the public came to witness the disturbance. Garda Butler told Mr McInerney to desist and Mr McInerney returned to his own home.

Solicitor Patrick Cadell maintained that the incident did not constitute a breach of the peace as described in the legislation as it was a “row between two people”, and the words were directed at Mr McInerney’s girlfriend and “no one else.”

Inspector James White maintained that it was “unsure” if the comments were aimed at just one person, and “could have been aimed at the garda”, and therefore the threshold of evidence had been met.

Judge Elizabeth MacGrath found that the alleged offence “does meet the level of proof” required and convicted Mr McInerney of being threatening and abusive in public. Mr McInerney has 89 previous convictions, 43 relating to public order matters.

Judge MacGrath adjourned the matter to March 22 to assess Mr McInerney’s suitability for a community service order, and directed that he be in Court on the day.

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