A man who was found drunk and became abusive to passengers onboard a Bus Eireann bus after a row with his girlfriend was last week fined €250 over the incident.
Michael Healy (44), with an address at Roosky, Roscommon was charged with being intoxicated in a public place and engaging in threatening and abusive behaviour at Minard, Longford on February 11 2017.
Both charges were handed down in accordance with Sections 4 and 6 of the Criminal Justice (Public Order) Act 1991.
Inspector Blathaín Moran said gardai were alerted to an incident concerning allegations that a passenger on a Bus Eireann bus was irritating other members of the public.
When Garda Colm Satchwell arrived at the scene at Minard, she said the bus in question was already parked on the hard shoulder.
Inspector Moran added the bus driver proceeded to inform Garda Satchwell of Mr Healy’s behaviour, amid claims he had become “aggressive” and was “causing a nuisance”.
She continued, adding that as Garda Satchwell made his way on to the bus he found Mr Healy lying in the middle of the aisle refusing to get up.
Inspector Moran said Mr Healy also became abusive to the Longford garda as he was escorted off the bus, so much so that during the course of his arrest pepper spray had to be deployed on the 44-year-old.
The court was told Mr Healy had six previous convictions to his name, but the last of those was recorded seven years ago.
In defence, solicitor John Quinn said the reason behind his client’s behaviour was as a consequence of a domestic incident at home.
“He had a row with his girlfriend and unfortunately took to the bottle,” said Mr Quinn
“He went into Longford by himself and basically drowned his sorrows.
“He accepts he was totally out of order.”
Mr Healy confirmed what his solicitor had told the court.
“I asked her to leave the house. The row was in the house,” he said, while indicating that the relationship was now at an end.
Mr Quinn, meanwhile, appealed to Judge Seamus Hughes to apportion leniency towards his client in light of his relatively untarnished past.
“The last conviction he has was back seven years ago and he has kept himself in reasonably good order and stayed out of trouble since,” he said.
In summation, Judge Hughes issued Mr Healy with a €250 fine for the Section 6 Public Order charge while striking out the corresponding Section 4 offence.