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Neighbours who argued over dead duck vow to live in peace

A PAIR of warring neighbours, one of whom allegedly "belted" the other over the head with a dead duck as she was upset the neighbour's dogs had killed the bird, have been bound to the peace for five years.

Elizabeth Walsh (59) and Adrienne Fearon (66) and their daughters signed the peace bonds after they reached an agreement with a court-appointed mediator.

A judge said he was pleased peace had broken out between the parties, and they are all willing to live in a neighbourly, civil and responsible manner.

Horse breeder Elizabeth Walsh had told a court she loved animals and would never use a duck, which had been a family pet for four years, to hit someone over the head.

However, it was found Mrs Walsh "pushed and shoved" her neighbour, Adrienne Fearon, in what a judge described as "argy bargy".

The incident occurred the day after Mrs Fearon's dogs attacked and killed Mrs Walsh's duck.

Mrs Fearon's dogs, who the judge found had been worrying livestock, have since been put down.

Judge James McDonnell had ordered the pair to work with an independent mediator, and the case was before Tallaght District Court to see if they had patched up their differences.



Pleased

The court heard both families had worked with the mediator, and reached an agreement, the terms of which were not revealed.

The women, of Brittas, Co Dublin, said they didn't want any more conflict, and were willing to abide by the agreement.

Judge McDonnell said he was pleased the women had seen sense at long last, and he thanked the probation services and the court mediator for the effort they put into brokering an agreement.

The judge said he would not tolerate any future breakdown in civil relations between the parties, and he ordered Mrs Fearon and Mrs Walsh, and their daughters, to enter into a peace bond for five years.

Mrs Fearon previously claimed she was on her way to Mass on February 10, 2008, when Mrs Walsh grabbed her by the arm as she walked past her front gate.

She alleged Mrs Walsh said "you're going to pay for what your dogs did to my duck".

Mrs Fearon then said Mrs Walsh and another woman pushed and shoved her to the ground, bashed her over the head with the dead duck and then tried to stuff the bird down her top.

Mrs Walsh, who was in her dressing gown at the time, denied she touched Mrs Fearon.

She said Mrs Fearon's two dogs had attacked and killed her duck the day before.

Mrs Fearon said she had been at home all day and didn't notice anything unusual.



Screaming

In turn, Mrs Walsh said she was holding the dead duck in her arms when Mrs Fearon passed her gate. She showed her the duck, saying "look at what your dogs did to my duck".

Mrs Walsh claimed Mrs Fearon told her "I don't give a f**k about your duck".

She said she then stumbled and fell to the ground screaming. She said there was no contact between the two.

hnews@herald.ie


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