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Armagh man who kicked van and tore down fence jailed

Police had received a report of an intoxicated male - identified as the defendant - who had kicked and urinated over their van

Armagh Courthouse

An Armagh man has been sentenced to one month in jail after kicking a van and tearing down a fence in two separate incidents.

Glen William McMurdie, of Alexander Avenue, appeared before Armagh Magistrates’ Court, sitting at Newry Courthouse on Tuesday, via videolink from Maghaberry.

The 42-year-old was charged with a number of offences, including criminal damage, attempted criminal damage, threats to damage property and tampering with a motor vehicle.

The court heard that on May 21 of last year, police received a report of an intoxicated male in Armagh, whom the reporting person identified as the defendant. They stated that the defendant had kicked and urinated over their van. They also stated that he had threatened to burn their partner’s van and that of another neighbour.

Police located the defendant in the vicinity and he was arrested and taken to Lurgan custody.

On July 18, the defendant failed to attend Dungannon station to answer for his bail. He failed again on August 4 and the next day, police attended his home address and arrested him.

The second set of charges before the court arose from an incident on December 5 last year, when police received a report from an injured party that the defendant had damaged their fence at an address in Armagh. On police arrival, they observed the fence being pulled down.

The injured party and his partner both observed the defendant at the fence and he gestured for them to come outside, but they phoned the police.

Police attended the defendant’s home address, and when he refused to answer the door, police forced entry and the defendant attempted to kick the rear door of the police vehicle.

The court heard that the cost of the fence was £135.

A defence solicitor told the court that the defendant had “long-standing issues” with a number of other individuals.

District Judge Magill said that his options were limited without a pre-sentence report.

He said to the defendant: “Clearly, there are problems. I don’t know what the problems are, and that’s not the point. The point is, this is not the way to solve problems, because you see what happens? You end up in jail.”

In light of the defendant’s plea of guilty, and the fact that he had already spent the equivalent of 10 weeks in custody, District Judge Magill imposed a period of one month in custody in respect of each of the charges, to run concurrently.

The defendant was also ordered to pay £135 compensation, and given 26 weeks to pay.

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