A Ballina man was found guilty of a technical assault on his ex partner, but not guilty of trespassing, at Ballina District Court this week. Judge Mary Devins made her decision after hearing evidence from James Colohan, 7 Bunree Road, Ballina, and his ex partner Laura Moyles, and investigating garda John Barrett.
The court was told that both of the parties had been in a relationship which had ended in July of last year, but they had been seeing each other on and off in the weeks leading up to the incident on November 24 2010 and had been texting.
Ms Moyles told the court that she had told Colohan earlier that evening that they would not be getting back together permanently. He came from his home in Ballina to hers in Killala, where he was shouting and screaming, and he grabbed her by the arm and pulled her phone out of her hand because he believed there was someone else texting her. She also alleged that he spat in her face and knocked her to the ground and refused to leave the house when she asked him to.
Colohan admitted to the court that he did call to her home that evening, he said he was calm and composed for the most part but did use some choice language when talking to her. He also told the court that he did grab her by the arm when he grabbed the mobile phone from her. He said he wanted to see the phone because he believed that another man was texting her and they were having a relationship behind his back.
Garda John Barrett in his evidence told the court that on the night in question Ms Moyles called to the Garda station to make a complaint at around 10.30pm. He said he took a statement from her and photographed her right arm which he said had some faint bruising on it. He also told the court that on a number of occasions after the complaint he had approached Colohan to make a cautioned statement which Colohan refused to do.
Judge Mary Devins in her judgment said that she could not see there was a trespass as both parties admitted that Colohan called to the house and was admitted. However she did find a technical assault had taken place, as the defendant in his own evidence admitted that he had grabbed her arm when he tried to take her mobile phone. She adjoined sentencing until September 11 2012.