A man who appeared before Longford District Court recently charged under the Criminal Justice (Public Order) Act had his case dismissed following a hearing into the matter.
Paul Kelly, 35 Oakvale, Longford appeared before Judge Seamus Hughes charged with trespass at 34 Oakvale, Longford on September 20, 2016.
Outlining the evidence to the court, Inspector Bláithín Moran said that on the date in question, gardaí responded to a call after they were informed that there was a male trespassing on a property in the Oakvale area of Longford town.
She said that when the Gardaí arrived in the area they observed the defendant inside the house in question.
“There was slight damage to the property and in fairness that damage did not appear to be recent,” she added.
“Mr Kelly said that he caused no damage at the property and was only there because he had a row with his partner and she would not let him back into the house that the couple shared.”
Meanwhile the defendant addressed Judge Hughes directly.
He said that he had an argument with his girlfriend on that particular day and she wouldn’t allow him back into the house.
It then began to rain, he added, and he subsequently sought refuge from the rain in the house next door to them.
Mr Kelly also said that the owner of the house lived outside the jurisdiction and it was he who kept an eye on the property in the owner’s absence.
He said the property was prone to break-ins and had been destroyed by vandalism in the past.
“Mr Kemp is the owner of that house; it is next door to us and I keep an eye on it for him,” the defendant continued, before pointing out that that the main problem with the property was that people often entered it because they were aware that nobody lived in the house.
“I make sure that nobody goes in their drinking and stuff.”
Meanwhile, the court heard that in recent times a number of people had entered the house and caused extensive damage there.
“They came in, turned on the water and the whole place was flooded,” continued the defendant.
“As a matter of fact, the house ended up destroyed.”
He added, “The reason I was in the house at all was because of the row I had with my girlfriend; she wouldn’t let me back in and when it started to rain I went into the house beside us there”.
Following his deliberations on the matter, Judge Hughes said he believed the defendant and he subsequently dismissed the matter before the court.
“Don’t let me see you in any more trouble though Mr Kelly,” the Judge concluded.