A 19-year-old man who threatened gardaí with a knife when they came to his home in Castlebar to investigate an assault on his mother was sentenced to six months detention at last week’s sitting of Castlebar District Court.
On November 21 last at 8.20pm gardaí received a complaint from Mary Galvin, mother of the accused Liam Gleeson, that her son had assaulted her and she was in fear of him at 54 An Srúthan, Turlough Road, Castlebar. Following the attack she had subsequently been forced to run out of her house.
When the gardaí arrived Ms Galvin gave them a key to the house and upon entering the residence they found Gleeson to be in an agitated and aggressive state. When they opened the door he quickly reached under a cushion and pulled out a knife and shouted, “You’re not taking me”.
The gardaí had to forcibly restrain him and take the knife away from him before arresting him and conveying him to Castlebar Garda Station.
Gleeson also appeared in relation to a number of earlier incidences. On June 19 last the accused was arrested after he was seen stealing two bottles of wine from Xtra Vision in Castlebar. Five days later on June 24 last he was arrested again after he gained forcible entry and was found trespassing on a residential property at 8 Pinegrove, Castlebar.
Defence solicitor Tom Walsh told presiding Judge Denis McLoughlin that his client had a serious drink problem and he had come to the attention of gardaí a number of times because of this.
He added that Gleeson had suffered as a result of a difficult upbringing and had very little education background, and just last year he discovered that his estranged father had passed away.
Mr Walsh said Gleeson was presently in a young offenders institution in Castlerea. He has sought to make amends with his mother, and he added that he is sorry for the offences which he has committed.
Judge Denis McLoughlin considered the evidence and said he viewed the incident where Gleeson brandished the knife and threatened gardaí as ‘particularly serious’. He also noted that his assault on his mother, who he added had every right to feel secure in her own home, was very unedifying.
He subsequently considered the case and sentenced Gleeson to a period of six months incarceration at the young offenders institution in Castlerea for the incident with the knife. He imposed a further two month period of detention on Gleeson for the assault on his mother to run concurrently. Judge McLoughlin took all of the other matters into consideration.