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Farmer went 'astray' on way home after 'experimenting' with whiskey court hears


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A 72-year-old bachelor farmer went “astray” and took a wrong direction for home after he decided to experiment with whiskey, he told a District Court.

Michael Horgan of Ballymacthomas, Ballymaceligott, Tralee was summonsed before Killarney District Court on a public order charge on Tuesday.

He pleaded guilty to the offence of being intoxicated to such an extent at New Street, Killarney, he was a danger to himself and to others.

It was his first time before a court and he had no previous convictions. 

Sgt Kieran O’Connell, outlining the  offence on the summons, told Judge O’ Connor that at 11.15 pm on April 15, 2016, the accused was found “asleep on a footpath in New Street.”

"He was very drunk and Gardai arrested him," the Sergeant said.

Mr Horgan addressed the court and told Judge O’Connor:

“I should have went up the street, but the amount of drink I had must have led me astray.”

“Drink can do that,” Judge O’Connor agreed.

Mr Horgan's solicitor, Padraig O’Connell said in fact his client took "a drop of whiskey" and he never drank whiskey.

“And it didn’t suit him. He decided to experiment with whiskey,” the solicitor said.

Mr Horgan then explained that “is Guinness I normally take.”

He didn’t know what came over him on the day and why he decided to experiment with whiskey, he told Judge O’Connor. But, in any case he had “a good few whiskeys – five or six half ones,” he said. 

“And did you have five or six pints as well?” the judge  enquired.

“I had more than that!” Mr Horgan said. “ I spent seventy pounds anyway,” he added.

Pleading for leniency, Mr O’Connell said his client was a bachelor, and a small farmer.

Questioned by the judge Mr Horgan said he had no stock but the land was leased. However, he assured the judge that if he got off without a conviction he would be able to contribute to the court poor box.

“I’ll find a few bob alright to pay up,” Mr Horgan assured the court.

The judge said he would accept a contribution of €500 for the court poor box and he would get the Probation Act.

“Which means the night will have cost him €570… and of course the solicitor won’t be charging fees!” Judge O’Connor said, giving  Mr Horgan time to contribute.  

Online Editors