‘I hope you are proud of yourself going out with a Kerryman’

A 68-year-old man pleaded guilty yesterday to harassing a woman by phoning 150 times and leaving voicemails including some threats to kill her and her partner.

‘I hope you are proud of yourself going out with a Kerryman’

Tom Murray, of 10A Wellington Rd, Cork, said he was sorry for what he had done but Judge Con O’Leary questioned whether he had any insight or any real remorse.

In voicemails, Murray made threats to his ex and her new partner: “I will fucking give it to you and that Kerry man. How can you do that to me after all our time together?

“You got me locked up, I will fucking kill him. I hope you are proud of yourself going out with a Kerryman. I will fucking kill him.

“You dirty fuck tramp, I will fucking get it off you.”

Sergeant Alan McCarthy said similar threats were made in other voicemails.

Michael Joyce, solicitor, said the accused had never been in trouble and that two nights in a cell at Mayfield Garda Station and five nights in Cork Prison had a bad effect on the pensioner and that he had learned his lesson from this and would not be reoffending.

Judge O’Leary said he wanted to hear directly from the accused.

Murray said he was sorry. He said the past six months had been horrible but then he went on to complain about the cold conditions in the cell at Mayfield Garda Station. “You wouldn’t put a wild dog in it,” he said. “I’m a lucky man to be alive. I was freezing to death in there.”

When Judge O’Leary asked him if he felt that this was harsh in the context of what he had done by way of harassment, Murray replied: “I didn’t kill anyone.”

Judge O’Leary asked Murray: “What did you do wrong?” Murray replied: “I made a few phone calls.” He went on to say gardaí had stolen his phone from him.

Judge O’Leary said the accused had no grasp of the wrong he had done, which included death threats to the 65-year-old neighbour with whom he had been in a relationship that ended 10 years previously. He also threatened her new partner and punched a female garda in the face when she approached him about it. The judge said of Murray: “He is out of touch with reality. He has no concept of the offences he committed.”

The judge said the only reason Murray even said he was sorry was because he did not want to go back to prison but there was no prospect of him not committing similar offences in the future.

Judge O’Leary said he would put the case back for six weeks for assessment by the probation service of the suitability of the case to be dealt with through the restorative justice programme.

“He may be unsuitable, given his lack of awareness of the gravity of the offence he committed,” the judge said.

Sergeant McCarthy said Murray committed 19 counts of harassment which related to various dates from September to December 2015. He also assaulted the woman and her present partner, assaulted Garda Agnieszka Pizlo, and committed four counts of engaging in threatening behaviour.

He was also charged yesterday with 19 counts of harassment of the woman, with whom he had been in a relationship previously, on various dates between September 1 and December 7, 2015.

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