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Nurse kept on sending sinister texts to victim while waiting sentence

A NURSE found guilty of harassing a businessman continued to "torment" him with a stream of nearly 600 texts while she was on bail awaiting sentence, a court has heard.

Elizabeth Tamayo (50) had bail reinstated after being jailed for four days following breaches of a condition not to contact the victim, Thomas Cullen.

Mr Cullen told how he received a series of mostly "gibberish" texts in the space of a month, but also several more "sinister" messages that referred to his death.

He said the texting went on 24 hours a day and even happened while he was paying his respects at the wake of a deceased friend.

Over the past five years, he said, he had got 30,000 unwanted texts and 18,000 phone calls from Tamayo.

Judge Aeneas McCarthy agreed to reinstate bail but remarked that if a man had harassed a woman in the same way, he would "certainly be in prison".

Tamayo, of Lohunda Road, Clonsilla, had been convicted in February this year of harassing the victim on dates between August 2006 and May 2009, after a contested hearing.

The trial judge had indicated he might apply the Probation Act if the accused followed the conditions set down.

However, the breaches emerged when she came back to court last week. She was remanded in custody and Mr Cullen called to give evidence of the bail breaches. He said the messages resumed two weeks after Tamayo's conviction and in July alone, the accused sent him a total of 590 texts.

Some, of a "sinister nature" stated: "you are crying for your death", "a smile on the curse of your hands to masturbate" and "wish you to your death, it's a perfect combination".

Some "nonsensical" messages stated: "cooking dinner" and "going to bed".

Mr Cullen also received around 10 voice messages a day.

He said while he had been at a wake for the late Attorney General Rory Brady, he received 14 texts from Tamayo.

Tortuous

To date over a five-year period, Mr Cullen said, he had received around 30,000 unwanted texts and 18,000 phone calls from the nurse.

"I don't know what way to describe it, it's tortuous, intolerable," Mr Cullen said.

Mr Cullen said he "couldn't hide" because his phone number was a business number and it was easily got from his website if he changed it.

Asked if he had himself contacted the accused, he said: "Absolutely in no shape, form or methodology. Not in this world anyway, maybe in a different world in her mind."

Michael O'Connor, defending, asked Judge McCarthy to reinstate bail, saying he thought the accused had "learned her lesson" after her time in custody.

She gave a sworn undertaking not to contact Mr Cullen again. "I would ask you to see this situation for what it is. The defendant is a nurse who has given service to the health care system in the State and has given an undertaking not to contact Mr Cullen again," he said.

The case was adjourned.

aphelan@herald.ie


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