Arrest warrant issued for man guilty of harassment charge

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A warrant was issued for the arrest of a 40-year-old man after he was convicted in his absence last Thursday at Banbridge Magistrates Court on a charge of harassment.

Edward Aiden Oliver McDermott, Whyte Acres, Banbridge, was charged that between September 9 and November 30 last year he pursued a course of conduct which amounted to harassment of John McCourt.

The case was listed as a contest but a barrister representing McDermott said his client had not turned up.

He explained that his instructing solicitor had tried to phone the defendant but there was no reply.

The lawyer asked for an adjournment but District Judge, Mr Paul Copeland, said it would be dealt with.

When the case was mentioned again the prosecution called its witnesses .

Mr John McCourt, said that since 1992 he had ran a furniture business at Dromore Road, Banbridge.

He explained that at the beginning of last year it had been arranged for McDermott Concrete to concrete a yard and they gave a quote of £2,500.

When the job was finished, McDermott Concrete wanted £5,800.

It was agreed to pay £4,450 but since then there had been almost daily incidents of harassment.

Beverely McCourt, in her statement, described an incident where the defendant was outside the shop in a lorry.

He blasted his horn loudly, put his hands up and pointed at her.

Louis McCourt said that on September 11 he saw the defendant who was in a car staring at him.

He said McDermott gave him the middle finger. He knew there was an ongoing problem between the defendant and his father.

A police officer said he received a report from John McCourt of ongoing harassment from the defendant.

During interview McDermott is alleged to have said ‘this is a load of b*******’ and ‘a load of s***’ adding that ‘they owe me £1,400 and won’t pay me’. Later he added ‘f*** sake this is a joke’.

Judge Copeland said that he was satisfied beyond reasonable doubt there had been persistent and determined harassment intended to cause annoyance and hurt to Mr McCourt.

He issued a bench warrant to have the defendant brought to court for sentencing.