Monday 19 March 2018

Deaf man banned from Donegal​ for harassing family

John McGrotty leaving Letterkenny Courthouse Photo: NW NewsPix
John McGrotty leaving Letterkenny Courthouse Photo: NW NewsPix

Greg Harkin

A deaf man who pleaded guilty to harassing a local doctor and his family for several years has been banned from his native county and ordered to live in Dublin after breaching his bail conditions.

John McGrotty (65), of St Peter's Terrace, Dungloe, stood naked on his front lawn beside the McEniff family home, threw nails on to their driveway and made rude gestures to their children during a reign of terror, a court has heard.

He had pleaded guilty to the offences in Dungloe last week and was ordered to stay away from Dr Dara McEniff, his wife Eimear and their children.

But Falcarragh District Court, sitting in Letterkenny, heard yesterday that, despite a warning from the judge last week, he had harassed Mrs McEniff again 48 hours later.

In the original charges, to which McGrotty pleaded guilty, there were up to 35 instances of harassment. Offences included making rude gestures to the McEniff children, aged 11 and six.

Judge Paul Kelly said the family has "suffered horrendously since July 2013 almost up to last October".

McGrotty admitted harassing and stalking Dara and Eimear McEniff and their family in Dungloe between July and December last year.

Mrs McEniff told the judge yesterday that she had been harassed by the accused again on Friday last.

She said she was driving towards her house in Dungloe when McGrotty stood in front of her in the roadway and began to shout at her as a funeral cortège was passing by.

The court heard how McGrotty had regularly taken it upon himself to direct traffic at funerals despite appeals from a priest for him to stop.

"I was really shocked to see him. You had instructed him to stay off the road as it is the road the children's school is on. He got very aggressive and was waving his arms and making all sorts of gestures," she said.

Judge Kelly ordered McGrotty to leave Donegal and live with his daughter in Glasnevin, Dublin.

"I want it made clear to him that he is to leave Donegal and not to come back under any circumstances. If he is Donegal he will be lifted," the judge said.

Irish Independent

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