A Christmas miracle played out at Cork District Court where a man who was thought to be dead walked into court.
The man in question was Finbarr Geary. He was due before Cork District Court on Tuesday in relation to an alleged public order incident at the Simon Community on Anderson’s St, Cork. On that occasion, the 29-year-old’s solicitor said that he had been notified by the Simon Community that the young man was dead.
Defence solicitor Frank Buttimer said he had written to Finbarr Mr Geary, care of the Simon community, and his letter was returned indicating the man was deceased. When the case was called in Cork District Court on Thursday, Finbarr Mr Geary was standing in the dock, large as life.
Mr Buttimer said to Judge Olann Kelleher: “He does not realise how lucky he is. I haven’t spoken to him yet.”
The solicitor then spoke with his client informing him of what had occurred in court two days earlier.
When the case was mentioned again, Judge Kelleher addressed him about the fact that rumours of his death were somewhat exaggerated, as Mark Twain put it.
Judge Kelleher said: “It is good to see you.”
Mr Buttimer added: “We are all glad to see you alive and well.”
Once he was welcomed back to the land of the living, the judge then had to address the more vexed question of why he had not turned up in court on Tuesday.
Mr Geary replied that the date for court was not available to him because his charge sheets got wet when they were in his pocket.
Mr Geary is charged with being drunk and a danger and being threatening and abusive at Simon Community on November 14.
When Judge Kelleher told him that someone at Simon had told Mr Buttimer, “you were no longer with us”, Mr Geary smiled and said some of the staff were “funny”.
Mr Geary told Judge Kelleher he was sleeping anywhere he could for a while but was now with the Simon Community. He said he had not slept at Simon for the past two nights.
Asked why, he said: “My head is wrecked from all different shit — sorry about the language.”
Gardaí Ken O’Brien and Stephen Kelleher both saw Mr Geary alive and well after he had been described as dead.
He was released on bail for a week.