A 62-year-old bachelor farmer received a one-month suspended prison sentence after he was convicted of abusing his neighbour when he told him he would ‘do time for you’.
Patrick Gaughan of Corclough East, Belmullet, denied the charges against him.
Last week’s sitting of Belmullet District Court, presided over by Judge Denis McLoughlin, was told there was a boundary dispute between Mr Gaughan and his neighbour Richard Ivers. Mr Gaughan also told the court that the dispute was ongoing, despite a Circuit Court order.
Mr Gaughan, who lives with his 93-year-old mother, was convicted of verbally abusing Mr Ivers on two occasions in June 12, 2011, when Ivers was painting a wall on his property. Mr Gaughan verbally abused Mr Ivers at midday and two hours later, at 2pm, Mr Gaughan shouted at him and said he would be willing to ‘do time’ for him.
Mr Ivers said that Mr Gaughan was intoxicated at the time and that before the incidents, he had been walking up and down their perimeter fence in an agitated state. He said Mr Gaughan was on the public road when he abused him.
The court heard that Mr Gaughan had previous convictions, including one for the possession of a knife during a previous dispute with Mr Ivers, and was sentenced to 40 hours’ community service.
Mr Sheridan said his client was the sole carer of his elderly mother and asked the judge to be lenient. After hearing there had been no further incidents of verbal abuse made by Mr Gaughan against his neighbour, Judge McLoughlin decided to impose a one-month prison sentence suspended for 12 months.