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‘Dreadful set of circumstances’ sees Keady man throw dumbbell at police officer

When told he had reduced his alcohol consumption but not stopped completely the district judge said: 'That doesn't impress me much'

Armagh Courthouse

A Keady man who threw a dumbbell at a police officer has been sentenced to four months in prison, suspended for two years.

The 43-year-old’s barrister described the facts of the case as a “dreadful set of circumstances” and commented that his client’s record would “not impress the court”.

Seamus Gerard McGeown, of Fairgreen Avenue, appeared for sentencing on assault on police and resisting police at Armagh Magistrates’ Court, sitting at Newry, on Tuesday.

Upon reading a pre-sentence report prepared by probation, District Judge Bernie Kelly commented: “I love that. It says that he cites a significant reduction in his alcohol consumption. That doesn’t impress me much, I have to say.”

Defence barrister Scott McWhinney admitted that absence from alcohol would have been preferable.

Prosecution outlined that in the early hours of December 30, police responded to a report of a noisy party at an address on Fairgreen Avenue, Keady.

Upon arrival, this defendant stuck his head out of a window and told officers to “f*** off”.

Police tried to talk McGeown in to coming out of the property but he refused. Becoming more aggressive, he went on to make threats to throw boiling water at police.

The defendant threw a dumbbell at one officer but this missed and he then locked himself in a room at the property.

Police arrested McGeown and when cautioned he replied: “No I didn’t.”

When charged with the offences before the court at Dungannon Custody Suite, the defendant stated: “Not true.”

Mr McWhinney described the facts of the case as a “dreadful set of circumstances” and commented that his client’s record would “not impress the court”.

Despite this, he stated that the presentence report was positive and that although “zero” alcohol was the goal a reduction showed McGeown was going in the right direction.

District Judge Kelly commented that there were positives in the report in relation to the defendant’s engagement with probation and community addiction services.

McGeown was sentenced to four months in prison suspended for a period of two years for the offences before the court.

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