A HUSBAND and wife who were together for 20 years now have safety orders against each other and in a court case they both claimed they were put in fear by the other.
The case was heard at an in camera hearing of Cork District Court under the Domestic Violence Act where each party was named both as defendant and complainant.
The disputed incident occurred on August 23, 2022, in the car park of a sports grounds where one of their children was training. The woman said that her husband made abusive comments to her in breach of her safety order.
The man denied this and said he did not say anything to her: “It did not happen. I did not speak to her. Nobody witnessed anything because there was nothing to witness.”
Judge Olann Kelleher said:
“You are saying her evidence is not true. What did happen?”
The man said he did not want to give evidence against his wife. He said the situation regarding access to the children was working out fine now and there was relative peace.
However, following some discussion between the representatives of both parties — solicitors Diarmuid Kelleher and Daithí Ó Donnabháin, for the woman and the man, respectively — and Sergeant John Kelleher and the judge, the man did go on to give evidence.
“She said as I was walking towards the football pitch, ‘Stay away from my daughter or I will f***ing kill you’. I was in fear for my life.”
The 45-year-old woman denied this and said she was living in a refuge while her husband was at home.
Judge Kelleher said he was not satisfied with the man’s evidence against his wife and he dismissed the charge against her. He found the facts proven in the case against him.
The judge did note the evidence that matters between the parties were somewhat better now. He said he would adjourn penalty for five months. “If there are no difficulties I will deal with in a favourable manner then,” he said. He warned the 53-year-old man: “He would want to be very careful or he will end up in custody.”