Limerick man accused of threatening grandfather

David Hurley

Reporter:

David Hurley

Thomas O'Neill was refused bail PICTURE: Press 22
A YOUNG man who is accused of threatening to kill a grandfather was refused bail after gardai expressed fears he would intimidate witnesses and commit further serious crimes if released.

A YOUNG man who is accused of threatening to kill a grandfather was refused bail after gardai expressed fears he would intimidate witnesses and commit further serious crimes if released.

Thomas O’Neill, aged 27, who has an address at Linehan Avenue Prospect is charged with making the threats at nearby Byrne Avenue at around 6pm on November 17, last.

Objecting to bail, Detective Garda Brian O’Connor said it will be alleged the defendant shouted at the 51-year-old “I’m going to shoot you f****** dead,” as he walked past his car.

The incident was witnessed by the injured party’s 13-year-old granddaughter who, Det Garda O’Connor said, was distressed when interviewed by gardai.

He alleged the incident was linked to a feud between a number of families living in the Prospect area which dates back more than a decade.

He said there have been a number of violent disorder and affray incidents in recent times and that a man was injured in a shooting incident almost two years ago.

He further alleged Mr O’Neill associates with criminal figures and has access to firearms.

Limerick District Court was told the alleged injured party made a formal complaint at Roxboro Road garda station within minutes of the incident and that Mr O’Neill was arrested a number of hours later when he presented himself at the garda station after becoming aware gardai were looking to speak with him.

In his evidence, the defendant accepted he was at Byrne Avenue around the time of the alleged offence but he insisted he did not make any threats.”

“At no time did I ever stop moving, I kept walking, how could I have shouted and roared at him?” he said.

Solicitor Sarah Ryan said her client was willing to live at an address “outside the city” if released and she said a relative of his was also willing to lodge a substantial amount of cash if approved as an independent surety.

Referring to the garda objection to her client’s bail application, Ms Ryan urged the court not to view it as a box-ticking exercise.

Judge O’Leary refused bail and adjourned the matter for DPP’s directions.