Judge tells Dundalk man it's time to take 'chips off his shoulders'

Dundalk District Court

Judge tells Dundalk man it's time to take 'chips off his shoulders'

A 45 year old man who admitted breaching a barring order two months after he was given a suspended sentence for a similar offence, has been directed to take part in a domestic violence awareness programme, after his case was further adjourned at Dundalk district court.

Judge John Coughlan told Derek Clelland, formerly of Cherryvale, Bay Estate and now with an address care of the Simon Community, Dundalk it's time to take both chips off his shoulders.

The defendant admitted breaching a barring order made on December first last year, by entering the rear of an address in Dundalk and watching the woman who sought the order, through a window putting her in fear on May 26th last.

The court was told in July the accused had five previous convictions including one from March this year, for breaching a barring order, for which he received a six month suspended sentence.

The defence solicitor said his client had been on remand in custody since the 27th of May, but did not take up his bail and had been using his time on remand in Cloverhill prison to deal with his addiction to alcohol.

The solicitor said in a letter handed into the court, Derek Clelland expressed his deep remorse for his conduct while a letter from the prison chaplain was also handed in.

The case was adjourned for an updated Probation report, and the defendant was released on bail but the court heard last Wednesday that the report was 'not very favourable'.

The court was told he had questioned the contents, but the Probation officer who was in court stressed that her colleague stands over the report.

Judge Coughlan said "It's time this gentleman got both chips off both shoulders and get treatment".

He adjourned the case to the 10th of January and directed that Derek Clelland participate in The Choice programme and warned him "I'm giving you a chance. You're going to have to take it and get rid of your chips or I will".