While staying over for a night in the Craigavon area a 21-year-old man was urged to call a teenage girl as a prank, the local magistrates’ court heard last Friday.
And although it was the girl’s father who answered her phone he went ahead and made a crude remark.
Daniel Magee, Rathmore, Warrenpoint, admitted that on January 11 this year he send by means of a public communications system a message that was grossly offensive, indecent or obscene.
He was fined £350 and ordered to pay a £15 offender’s levy.
The court heard that at 11.40pm the father of a 14-year-old girl answered her phone and a male made a crude suggestion of what he wanted the girl to do to him.
The phone number used by the caller was traced to a woman who said it was being used by her daughter.
It was alleged that Magee had been at their house on the night in question and made the call. He provided a number of alibis but none of them checked out.
A solicitor representing Magee said these were rather unsavoury events.
He explained that his client had been staying overnight in the Craigavon area with his girlfriend. They had been out and consumed a lot of alcohol.
The solicitor added that they were approached by the girlfriend’s younger sister who, as a prank, wanted them to ring her friend and say something to her down the line.
He added that Magee had no knowledge of this girl and what started out as a ‘stupid prank’ turned out to be more serious. He would not know this girl and has not been back in the house since.
The solicitor said that the offence was partly fuelled by alcohol and even when the girl’s father answered the phone Magee continued. The girl’s friend instigated the whole prank.
District Judge, Mr Peter King, said this was ‘completely reprehensible’ behaviour and the only thing that protected the girl from ‘drunken obscenity’ was her father answering the phone.