A Laois man arrested on two separate dates, once for causing a disturbance in an Indian restaurant and on a separate occasion for breaching a barring order, soiled the garda station each time by urinating or defecating on the floor.
Before last week’s sitting of Portlaoise Circuit Court was Carl Fox (27), Portarlington, appealing prison sentences imposed in the district court for the two sets of offences.
In relation to one incident, the court heard that the gardaí were called to attend the Mayur Restaurant at Main Street, Portlaoise, as there was a male refusing to leave the premises.
The male, Carl Fox knocked over flowerpots and refused to leave, so he was arrested, but as he was being escorted to the garda van he repeatedly spat at a female garda.
He kept kicking the door of the van when put inside and when brought to the garda station he urinated on the cell floor and threw his meal around the cell.
He had 16 previous convictions, including 11 for public order offences and two for criminal damage.
When this matter came before the district court, Judge Catherine Staines told the accused he had a lot to live for and advised him to take some time to “dry out” from his alcohol problem.
Saying that assaulting a garda and causing criminal damage was just not acceptable, Judge Staines imposed six months in prison, with recognisance fixed in the event of an appeal.
On separate matters, Fox was sentenced in the district court to six months in prison, for two breaches of a safety order, at the Sycamores, Portarlington.
Details of this offence were given to the circuit court by State solicitor, Mr Donal Dunne. Mr Dunne gave evidence that the injured party came to the garda station on June 2 this year to report that Fox, her ex-partner, had come to her house and put her in fear.
On June 4, the woman again contacted the gardaí, saying that this time Fox had called to her grandmother’s house where he was beating on the windows and using foul language.
He also started blowing the car horn at the residence and put the injured party in fear.
When he was arrested and brought to the garda station, Fox again became abusive and urinated and defecated on the floor of the station.
When this matter came before the district court, Judge Staines imposed six months for criminal damage, and three months, concurrent, for the breach of a safety order.
At the recent appeal, barrister, Ms Louise Troy said there had been underlying turmoil in Fox’s family situation.
He is a father of five, with four of his children in care, and he and his partner were endeavouring to get the children back.
Ms Troy confirmed that Fox is now back with his partner and she was in court to support him.
She said the appellant, born in Dublin, had a very chaotic and dysfunctional upbringing and fell into drug use. Many of these criminal offences were fueled by his addiction to drugs and alcohol, said the barrister.
Ms Troy went on to say that her client had deep remorse for the incidents and was now endeavouring to turn his life around, as he wants to have a good influence on his children.
Defence also handed into court a letter from a jobs club in Portarlington which indicated the appellant may be able to get employment.
In ruling, Judge Keenan Johnson said the offences were despicable behaviour.
“Someone is running a restaurant and someone comes in and acts like this, then to spit at a garda and urinate and defecate in a cell, it’s so disrespectful to the gardaí and the public,” said the judge.
Declaring that the matter could not go without a custodial sentence, Judge Johnson remanded the appellant in custody to this Friday, December 8, for a probation report.