‘Outrageous enterprise’ ends with collision with police car

The justice system
The justice system

“This was an outrageous enterprise which must have been terrifying for those inside the house,” a District Judge told a man who threatened to kill everyone in a Coalisland house while armed with a baseball bat.

Appearing before a sentencing hearing at East Tyrone Magistrate’s Court on Wednesday was Stephen Andrew Campbell, 42, from Drumcoo Green in Dungannon.

The court heard how police received a report of a man wielding a baseball bat and a metal bar outside a Coalisland residence on the early evening of August 22.

As police arrived in the vicinity they were updated that the man had driven off.

However, a vehicle matching the description was spotted by police and they put their car across the road to force it to stop.

The defendant did not and collided with the front of the police car as well as causing damage to another car parked nearby.

As Campbell was being removed from the car he resisted arrest. The constables also noted the smell of alcohol and he subsequently provided a sample over twice the limit.

When questioned about the event he told police that he could remember nothing.

One of the injured parties told police that Campbell had threatened to kill all the occupants of the house which had included children.

“This offence was pre-meditated insofar as there was alcohol taken,” said Mr Blaine Nugent, defending.

He said that his client had “taken matters into his own hands” during a dispute between a family member and a neighbour.

“The pre-sentence report states a low likelihood of re-offending and as such would ask that the court suspended any custodial sentence.

“He is from a tragic background... but is now in a steady relationship and presents as a pleasant individual.”

Deliberating over sentence, District Judge John Meehan said, “This was an outrageous enterprise which must have been terrifying for those inside the house which included children.”

He imposed fines totalling £700 and handed down a two year driving disqualification.

Judge Meehan then handed down three prison sentences of three months which he ordered run concurrently before suspending them for two years.

“If you engage in offending behaviour again you will go to prison,” Judge Meehan warned the defendant.

“If you do it in the next two years you will start by serving those three months.”

He then ordered that upon the defendant’s successful completion of the drink driver’s course he would permit a 25 per cent reduction in the length of the driving ban.

An offender’s levy of £15 was also imposed upon Mr Campbell.