Injured man with ‘guts hanging out’ actually had set of large rosary beads

When gardaí called to the scene of a late-night disturbance at a Kerry hotel, they found a man in an injured state in a corridor with what appeared to be his guts hanging out of his torso.

However, Stephen Coffey of Gortroe, Fossa, had been celebrating a First Communion in Kenmare and it was a set of large rosary beads which was streaming from his side, the district court was told.

Coffey, who is currently in Australia, pleaded guilty through his solicitor, Padraig O’Connell, to public order offences including threatening and abusive behaviour.

His parents became concerned and called gardaí, who arrived to the Kenmare Bay Hotel to arrest him.

Garda Noel O’Leary said people were in an agitated state in the corridor of the hotel at 3.45am on May 25 this year.

They found a stand-off situation and directed the accused to desist. One other person was injured, and the accused was injured himself.

“Initially we thought the injuries were more serious. In fact it was a rosary bead,” the garda said.

However, alongside the rosary beads, Coffey also had a glass bottle wrapped in a towel, which Judge James O’Connor described as “very nasty”.

Mr O’Connell put it that the presence of the rosary beads might mitigate the incident, and asked for leniency. “If I were you now, I’d leave the rosary beads out of it,” the judge said.

The other person injured was a family member.

Coffey had 18 pervious convictions for public order and other offences, at various locations in the south- west, including Bantry, Listowel, and Kenmare, the court was told.

Judge O’Connor said Coffey, who is working as a manual labourer in Australia, should be in court in person and he adjourned the matter to December 5 to allow Mr O’Connell to ascertain when he is returning from Australia.


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