Hatchet and curtain pole brandished in row



Two men used a hatchet and a curtain pole to threaten another man during a row between neighbours, a court has heard.

Francis McCafferty (40) of Belault, Pettigo pleaded guilty at Ballyshannon District Court on Friday to using threatening, abusive or insulting behaviour on June 8 last at Oakgrove, Kinlough.

The court heard that two gardaí were called to the scene of the row. Francis McCafferty was holding a wooden curtain pole while the man with him had “thrown a hatchet behind a hedge”.

The victim told gardaí that McCafferty had said: “We’re going to kill you. You’re going to get it in the head. That’s all it takes, one bullet”.

At this stage, Garda Kevin Garvin managed to “settle the situation”.

Defence solicitor Rory O’Brien said his client and the victim “were friends at one stage” but had fallen out. The defendant believed he was owed €650 and this, as well as the amount of drink taken, were “at root cause” of the row. They were no longer neighbours.

“Mr McCafferty absolutely accepts the wrongdoing of his actions, which were motivated by drink and the money he claims he was owed,” Mr O’Brien told the court.

The defendant has a number of previous convictions, including one for drink driving arising from the same incident, for which he was disqualified for four years.

He was also convicted of assault last year and, in 2000, he was convicted of dangerous driving and drink driving.

Judge Kevin Kilrane adjourned the case to November.

He remanded McCafferty on bail, with own bond of €300, on condition he have “no contact whatsover” with the victim or his family and not re-offend.

“He has to deal with his problem with alcohol, which is the source of all his problems,” the judge commented.

If McCafferty abides by the terms of his bail, Judge Kilrane will consider applying the Probation of Offenders Act.

This means that, if he does not re-offend in two years, the conviction will be removed from his record.


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