Man saved from water’s edge by gardai, court hears

A man who had to be taken away from the water’s edge at Spanish Arch and arrested for his own safety had one month added to a sentence already being served.

Dermot Feeney (28 ) with an address at Fairgreen Hostel appeared before Galway District Court last Monday where he pleaded guilty to a number of public order offences including being intoxicated in a public place, threatening and abusive behaviour, and failing to obey Garda orders.

Inspector Mick Coppinger told the court that at 4.50pm on May 24, 2009, a man was seen “close to the waters” at Spanish Arch and a number of people feared that he would jump in. The gardai were called and they found the defendant to be highly intoxicated. They eventually coaxed him away from the water’s edge and he was arrested for his own safety.

On May 23 at 4.30pm gardai received a call about a man “acting up” at Supermac’s in Eyre Square. Feeney, who was intoxicated, refused to leave the area when directed to by gardai and was subsequently arrested. He had been arrested at Williamgate Street again that day for public order offences in which he was “causing problems” at Fairgreen car park.

Defence solicitor Valerie Corcoran explained that Feeney was currently serving a two month sentence which he received at Galway District Court just last week for similar offences. She added that her client has mental health problems compounded by consumption of alcohol and drugs. “He is his own worst enemy and is lucky the gardai did take him away from the water,” she said.

Judge Mary Fahy commented that the court had kept Feeney out of custody for a long time and that maybe a spell in prison “may be no harm”. She then sentenced Feeney to one month in jail to be served consecutively to the sentence already being served.


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