Accused came at gardaí with sledgehammer during investigation at his home

Judge grants bail on condition that man does not return to the family home and seeks help for mental health difficulties
Accused came at gardaí with sledgehammer during investigation at his home

Gardaí objected to bail fearing that the accused would return to the family home.

A 30-year-old man came at gardaí with a full-sized sledgehammer when they went to investigate a complaint against him, it was claimed during a bail application.

Garda Cormac Dineen of Kinsale Garda Station objected to bail being granted to Roy Fehily, of Nohoval, Kinsale, Co Cork, in light of the alleged incident on Monday night at his family home.

Garda Dineen testified at Cork District Court that they went to investigate reported difficulties with the accused at his home on January 10.

“He was in the back of the house in a vehicle. When we got within 20 feet from him he exited the vehicle and was extremely aggressive and came towards us quickly holding a full length sledgehammer.

“He was calling us scumbags and rats. We stopped and backed off. We sought assistance to arrest him.

Our fear is that he would return to the family home if granted bail.

He was quite agitated and distressed yesterday. I am aware there is a mental health history,” Garda Dineen said.

Roy Fehily said he was anxious to go directly to the psychiatric unit of Cork University Hospital for treatment. He said he had a background of conditions including anxiety and post-traumatic stress.

Regarding concerns that he would go back to his family home, the defendant said: “I won’t be harassing them or having anything to do with them if granted bail. I will stay with (a relative) if I’m not in hospital.”

He explained to his solicitor, Frank Buttimer, in the witness box:

I was smashing my own car with the sledgehammer because I was having a mental breakdown. That is what I was using the sledgehammer for.

Sgt Pat Lyons said the charge against the accused was of production of the weapon during the incident.

Judge Olann Kelleher granted him bail and adjourned the case at Cork District Court for one day to establish if the accused was in hospital. 

“I think he is better off there than in prison,” the judge said.

Roy Fehily said: “God bless you, Judge. Thank you very much.” 

Conditions of bail require him to stay away from his family home at Nohoval, abstain from all intoxicants, and keep a curfew to be at his relative’s home between 9pm and 7am if he is not in hospital.

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