Tuesday 20 August 2019

Jilted lover who harassed soldier has jail sentence suspended

 

Guilty plea: Janice O’Leary admitted harassing her former boyfriend
Guilty plea: Janice O’Leary admitted harassing her former boyfriend

Nicola Donnelly

A woman harassed a soldier and blamed him for causing her to lose their baby after their relationship ended, a court has been told.

Janice O'Leary (45) was sentenced to four months in prison, which Judge Dermot Dempsey suspended.

He also ordered her to pay €1,500 in compensation for the "trauma" she caused to Private Christopher Smith, who has now moved to Australia.

O'Leary, of Ballynally Lane, Moville, Co Donegal, first made contact online with Mr Smith when he was based in Lebanon, Drogheda District Court was told.

Using the false name Kerry Dunne, she built up a relationship with him through messages.

The court was told that she messaged the soldier "day and night".

Both O'Leary and Mr Smith were in separate relationships with other people at that time.

But when Mr Smith returned to Ireland, they agreed to meet.

They had a short sexual relationship before Mr Smith ceased contact with O'Leary.

She sent him a Facebook message claiming that she was pregnant with his child and asking him to come to meet her.

Later, she sent messages telling him that she had lost the baby and blaming him for it, Garda Sgt Ray Brady told the court.

However, Sgt Brady added that there was no evidence that O'Leary ever attended hospital for any pregnancy issues.

And eventually Mr Smith decided to report her persistent harassment to gardaí.

"The injured party felt he had to contact gardaí about her constant contact," said Sgt Brady.

O'Leary pleaded guilty to persistently harassing the Army private on dates between February 1 and February 20, 2015, and October 12 and November 3, 2015.

She has no previous convictions, the court was told.

Irish Independent

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