Harassment case probation report ‘worst I’ve seen’

A 33-year-old man made 60 silent phone calls to his ex-girlfriend after an acrimonious split, and yesterday the sentencing judge said the probation report on the accused was the worst he had ever seen.

Harassment case probation report ‘worst I’ve seen’

Keith Murphy, of St Clare’s House, Moyne Road, Enniscorthy, Co Wexford, has previously pleaded guilty to a harassment charge arising out of the making of 60 silent phone calls in a 24-hour period to his ex- girlfriend.

Judge Leo Malone had put sentencing back until yesterday to allow time for the preparation of probation and psychological reports on the accused.

Judge Malone commented yesterday: “I don’t know what to make of him. He is not co-operating with the probation officer or the psychologist. The report from the probation officer is the worst I have seen.

“The nature of the offence is exceptionally serious.”

Frank Buttimer, defence solicitor, said he had told the accused repeatedly that he would have to co-operate with the psychologist and probation.

Judge Malone asked Inspector Bill Duane if there had been any further complaints against Murphy since the harassment in July 2014.

The inspector said there had not been.

Judge Malone said he would finalise the matter and impose an eight-month jail sentence, suspended on condition that the accused would commit no further offences in the next two years.

It emerged during a previous court hearing that the accused had told the probation officer who was assigned to him that he wanted to record their sessions in future.

Judge Malone noted that the accused man’s probation officer felt “antagonised and extremely intimidated”.

Murphy claimed: “The probation letter gives the idea I was not communicating with them, but they will tell you themselves they were not communicating with me.”

Judge Malone said the probation officer referred to the defendant’s challenging and intimidatory conduct and wanting to record phone calls.

Murphy said he wanted to record communications with the probation officer so that he could be sure of what was said.

A psychologist reporting on the accused said of the defendant, he was attempting to put the responsibility on other people.

Inspector Bill Duane said previously that on July 6 to July 7, 2014, the accused made 58 silent phone calls to the woman’s mobile phone and two calls of a similar nature to the land line at her home in Douglas.

The accused and the woman were in a relationship for two and a half years and it ended acrimoniously.

It was claimed in his defence that many of the calls were made to her when the woman was asleep and her phone on silent.

Since it happened he has deleted all contacts he had for her, such as her email and phone number, Mr Buttimer said.

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