Nenagh Court: Tipperary man called Nenagh garda 'four-eyed' and a 'freak'
A female garda who wears glasses was called a “four-eyed b***h” and a “freak” by a man who was subsequently charged under the Public Order Act, Nenagh Court was told.
Gary Feighery, 28, with an address given as 2 Castle Apts, Castle View, Nenagh, pleaded not guilty to being intoxicated in public and threatening, abusive and insulting behaviour at Castle View on March 15,, 2020.
The incident arose after Mr Feighery had earlier gone to the Garda station to report an alleged assault on him.
Garda Aisling Dunne told the court that, while on patrol, a call came to the station at 11am on March 15, 2020 saying that an intoxicated male was causing a disturbance at Castle View.
When she arrived at the scene she observed Mr Feighery shouting and he was intoxicated.
She tried to calm him down, but he did not comply.
She said Mr Feighery called her a “four-eyed b***h”, and a “freak”.
However, she was still trying to give him a chance as the Covid-19 pandemic was just starting and they had a briefing on it at the Garda station that morning.
She said that Mr Feighery was not compliant and threw a plastic bottle towards her.
Mr Feighery was arrested and placed in handcuffs and started to apologise for throwing the plastic bottle but he then became abusive again, she said.
Cross-examined by Liz McKeever, solicitor for Mr Feighery, Garda Dunne said that she had been made aware that it was the landlord who had made the complaint but neither the landlord nor his son had been willing to make a statement.
Garda Dunne said that Mr Feighery had not told her he was on medication and she put his behaviour down to intoxication.
She became aware back in the station that Mr Feighery had mental health issues.
Garda Barry Ahearn said that Mr Feighery came to the station at around 9am that morning to say he had been assaulted the previous night. He said he agreed to meet him back at his apartment later that day.
When he arrived, he said Mr Feighery was outside shouting: “The drugs are gone. F*** off.”
Garda Ahearn said that he spoke to the landlord and that he heard Mr Feighery call Garda Dunne a “freak” and a “b***h”.
“I asked him to talk to me in an ordinary manner. I did everything in my power to reason with him,” said the garda.
He said he first went to Mr Feighery’s apartment at 9.30am and the second incident happened around 11.30am.
Garda Jonathan Carrick told the court that at 8.45am Mr Feighery came to the station and reported an alleged assault by persons who had thrown cocaine into his apartment.
When he had Garda Ahearn called later Mr Feighery told them: “F*** off. It's gone.”
He later got a call about a dispute between a tenant and a landlord.
He did not see Mr Feighery throw a bottle at Garda Dunne.
Mr Feighery in his evidence said that he was 28 years old and now lived with his mother.
He said he had been at a party that night and left around 2.30am or 3am. When he got home he took sleeping tablets and at around 4am he heard banging on his door.
“There were two males at the door and they said they were there to give me a bag of cocaine. I said they were at the wrong house and they said they were not and threw the cocaine where it landed in my sitting room. As I was bending down they robbed my phone. I followed them and saw them go down the laneway at the side of the Hi-B. I went to the Garda station. I distinctly remember it was 3.30am or 4pm, not 8.45am,” he said.
The garda told him to come back in the morning but Mr Feighery told the garda he was not intoxicated.
At 11am on March 15, the gardaí knocked on his door and said a neighbour had complained that he was outside intoxicated.
“I kept telling them it was medication and I didn’t get a good night’s sleep,” said Mr Feighery.
He said he went back into his apartment but Garda Dunne pulled him out and said he was now in a public place and handcuffed him and arrested him.
He denied throwing a plastic bottle at her and also denied calling her names or being abusive towards her.
He said no garda had called to his apartment at 9.30am.
Under cross-examination by Insp Amanda Reynolds, Mr Feighery said he could not recall how long it had been between following the men and going to the Garda station as “everything had been in slow motion. I may have mistaken the time as it was dark.”
Insp Reynolds said that Garda Carrick had only taken up duty at 7am on March 15.
Ms McKeever said it was “unfortunate” that the landlord was not in court to give evidence. She said the gardaí had given contradictory evidence.
Judge Elizabeth MacGrath said that while there was a variation in the evidence, the garda evidence had been consistent.
She found Mr Feighery guilty on both counts.
Ms Keever told the judge that her client was studying law and had “significant” mental health issues.
Judge MacGrath adjourned the case to September 17 for a probation report.
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