Traffic wardens accused of ‘guerrilla warfare’

A former traffic warden fought back tears when she claimed her successor tried to intimidate motorists at her mother’s funeral.

Traffic wardens accused of ‘guerrilla warfare’

The case was described by Judge Mary Devins as “almost like guerrilla warfare” between the two traffic wardens for six years.

Patricia McCafferty, aged 40, was in Ballyshannon District Court, giving her defence evidence in a resumed hearing in which she was accused of harassment of Eddie Duffy on eight different dates between April 17 and September 16, 2012, at Finner and Drumacrin in Bundoran, Co Donegal.

She denied harassment of Mr Duffy, who took over from her on the streets of Bundoran after she was sacked as traffic warden by the town council in 2007.

Each claimed in evidence harassment by the other.

Ms McCafferty yesterday told the court that when her mother died in August 2012, Mr Duffy told drivers dropping off family members at the church before the funeral that if they parked there they would get a ticket. She said: “The way I saw it was intimidation of my family.”

She added that in her seven years as a traffic warden, she had never gone up the church road during a funeral as a mark of respect.

Ms McCafferty said she stopped putting videos of Mr Duffy allegedly abusing his duties on the internet when her mother died because she didn’t want to give the impression she was posting them because of how he behaved at the funeral.

Mr Duffy told an earlier hearing that Ms McCafferty repeatedly photographed and filmed him at work. His children told him there was a video of him on YouTube walking by certain cars outside Bundoran council offices and a second claiming he was stopped on double yellow lines while checking a ticket machine.

Judge Devins ruled that the facts against Ms McCafferty, of Main St, Bundoran, had been proved.

Judge Devins added that there was confusion by the prosecution and Mr Duffy had reacted to his harassment claim unusually by, in turn, following and photographing Ms McCafferty.

The judge said, as a consequence, she was prepared to dismiss the case if there was a defence undertaking to have no further contact with Mr Duffy or follow him or walk closely to him.

Ms McCafferty agreed after first complaining: “I might as well give up a few other constitutional rights.”

Last month, she avoided jail after agreeing in the High Court to remove allegedly defamatory material she posted on YouTube about Bundoran Town Council. She also agreed to cease distributing election literature which the council also claimed was defamatory.

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