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10 Aug 2022

Laois man warned get treatment for drug use or go to jail for six months

Fight

Laois man warned get treatment for drug use or go to jail for six months

A Portlaoise man who was fighting with his top off in the street has been told to go into treatment for his addiction issues or face six months in jail.

Paul Greene (23), 16 Cois Na hAbhainn, Portlaoise, was charged with threatening or abusive behaviour, and being intoxicated in a public place, at Market Square, Portlaoise.

When the case first came before the court last October, Sgt JJ Kirby gave evidence that on August 26, 2019, at 1.30am, the gardai responded to a fight on Main Street. The accused was there with his top off, trying to fight with another male. He fled the scene when gardaí arrived and had to be restrained and arrested.

Sgt Kirby said the accused was aggressive at the garda station, but then calmed down.

The accused had 28 previous convictions, including 15 for public order offences.

Judge Catherine Staines said the accused had an appalling record for someone his age and had been sent to prison before on public order matters.

The matter was adjourned on a number of occasions for a restorative justice report on the accused.

When the case returned to court last week, after reading the report, Judge Staines said the information outlined was not a good enough reason for him not to do the work with the Tidy Towns group as directed.

Mr Fitzgerald said his client had to regulate his prescribed medication. He said the accused needed treatment for his drug use, which included cannabis and benzodiazepine.

Judge Staines said she would give the accused a chance to go into treatment and adjourned the case for one year.

She said if he did not get treatment then the court would impose a six-month sentence.

The matter was put back to March 4, 2021.

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