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Dad made threat to kill ex over texts

A father who threatened to kill himself and his ex-partner when he suspected she was seeing someone else after their break-up has had his sentencing adjourned for six months.

Derek Menton (26) pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to assaulting Lindsay Dargan, smashing her mobile phone and making threats in person and via text message to kill or cause serious harm to her on March 23, 2008.

Menton, of Avonbeg Drive, Tallaght, also admitted assaulting Sergeant Michael Leahy at Dodder Valley while resisting arrest the following day.

Judge Patricia Ryan postponed Menton's sentencing until November to allow for the preparation of a more extensive probation report.

Giving evidence in court, Menton said that his abusive behaviour was out of character.

He told his defence counsel Paul Carroll that he had since reconciled with his ex-partner and was now on good terms with her and his son.

The court heard that Menton's violent outburst came about because he saw text messages on her phone from another man shortly after their relationship ended.

Garda Diane Swift revealed that Menton, whose 11-year-old brother died shortly before the incident, began squeezing his ex-partner's jaw while she was still holding his child.

She told Pieter Le Vert, prosecuting, that Ms Dargan ran upstairs at her father's home before Menton caught up with her, squeezed her jaw again and punched her in the ear.

She left the house with the baby and drove off towards her own home but Menton pursued her in his car, overtook her, took the keys from her ignition

He took his child but Ms Dargan tracked him down at his father's home, where he argued with her and said he would kill her and then kill himself.

Menton continued to threaten his ex-partner, saying he would haunt her from his grave, via text the next day before he was arrested.