A Portarlington father of four who was detected swaying drunk in the middle of the road has been warned by Judge Catherine Staines that if he comes before the court again the health board may be called in to assess whether he is fit to look after his children.
At last week's sitting of Portlaoise District Court, Gerard Casey, 30, with an address at 1 Woodland Park, Canal Road, Portarlington, was charged with being intoxicated in a public place, at Ballymorris Road, Portarlington, on June 29 last year.
Garda Erica Sweetman gave evidence that the accused was observed in an intoxicated state at the Ballymorris Road, Portarlington.
He was walking in the middle of the road, swaying from side to side, and as he was a danger to himself and other he had to be arrested.
He had 12 previous convictions.
Defence, Mr Philip Meagher said that the accused, a father of four, had been at a relative’s birthday party on the day and had far too much to drink.
Mr Meagher said that obviously the accused should be showing a better example to his children.
Judge Staines asked were there any concerns about the accused’s children, or was Tusla involved.
Mr Meagher replied that there were no concerns and the children had not been at the party.
Judge Staines then asked Garda Sweetman were there any concerns about the accused’s children and the garda replied: “Not at the moment.”
Said Judge Staines to the accused: “I suggest you stop drinking and take responsibility, because if you come before me again the health board could get involved to assess if you can look after your children.”
The accused was convicted and fined €60.