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10 Aug 2022

Drink driver was abusive to female garda in Thurles

Thurles district court 

Drink driver was abusive to female garda in Thurles

A Holycross driver who was abusive towards a female garda while in custody, was fined and disqualified from driving for a total of five years, at Thurles district court.

Sgt Andrew Lyons told Judge Elizabeth MacGrath that on November 11, 2017, Garda Ben Jenkins was on patrol in the Abbey Road, Thurles, when he observed a man driving a vehicle while holding a mobile phone.

The vehicle was being driven in a “slightly erratic” manner. The driver was Kevin Fogarty, of 28 Gleann Ri, Holycross, Tipperary.

Garda Jenkins detected a smell of intoxicating liquor from Mr Fogarty, and arrested him on suspicion of drink driving. Mr Fogarty was conveyed to Thurles garda station. During an initial observation period, Mr Fogarty said he could not give a sample due to a heart condition. He later gave a sample of blood which showed a blood/alcohol concentration of 209 milligrammes of alcohol per 100 millilitres of blood. The legal limit is 50 mgs of alcohol per 100 mls of blood for experienced drivers.

While in custody, Mr Fogarty was “very abusive” towards Garda Orla Walshe. A lawful demand was made for Mr Fogarty’s driving documents. He failed to produce. Mr Fogarty was charged with driving with excess alcohol, having no driving licence, no insurance, no NCT, and threatening and abusive behaviour. A separate charge of dangerous driving was withdrawn.

Mr Fogarty has four previous convictions, including for road traffic matters, and criminal damage. Solicitor Mr JJ Fitzgerald said Mr Fogarty cares for his father, who is suffering from an illness. Mr Fogarty had drink taken on the day, and “slept during the day.” “He could not get a taxi, and took a chance by getting into that van,” said Mr Fitzgerald. Mr Fogarty had pleaded to all matters.

Judge MacGrath fined Fogarty a total of €350 and disqualified him from driving for two periods, of three years, and two years, and took the remaining matters into account.

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