Judge ‘appalled’ by number of domestic violence cases

Court hammer
Court hammer

A judge said the number of domestic violence cases that come before the court in Derry ‘continues to appal me’.

District Judge Barney McElholm made the comment as he jailed 38-year-old Brian Christopher Maguire for a total of nine months.

Maguire, of Kular Court, pleaded guilty to common assault, making a threat to kill and criminal damage.

The charges relate to an incident on July 3.

The court was told the defendant went to his ex-partner’s house and caused damaged to her front door.

Once inside he forced the woman onto a sofa on top of her eight-year-old child and grabbed her by the throat.

Maguire also pinned the woman against a wall and punched her face.

The 38-year-old threatened to kill the woman a number of times during the incident.

Two neighbours heard her screams and came to help her.

Maguire pulled one of the neighbours t-shirt’s over his head and the other managed to get him out of the house.

During police interview, Maguire denied the offences.

Defence counsel Eoghan Devlin told the court Maguire is a ‘man who has visited upon others that which was done to him in the past’.

He added the defendant has a number of dependancies.

District Judge McElholm quoted the poet W.H Auden: “I and the public know, what all schoolchildren learn, those to whom evil is done, do evil in return.”

He accepted Maguire had an abusive childhood but said this was ‘not an excuse for his behaviour’ which was ‘extremely serious’.