Man convicted of assaulting partner admits threats aimed at stopping her giving evidence
A MAN HAS been jailed for obstruction of justice after he admitted trying to stop his ex-partner giving evidence against him by telling her that her family – including her young daughter – would be shot.© PA Images
Noel McCabe (25) is currently serving a six-and-a-half year sentence for a number of offences, including assaulting his partner and violent disorder.
After he was charged with two counts of assaulting his partner in March and April 2018, he went on to make threats against her, Sergeant Adrian Mulligan told Dublin Circuit Criminal Court.
McCabe, with an address at Sandyhill Gardens, Sillogue Road, Ballymun, Dublin, pleaded guilty to obstructing the course of justice by intimidating a witness in June 2018.
The court heard that the victim had been in a relationship with McCabe for 18 months, which she described in a victim impact statement as a “nightmare”.
The relationship ended after McCabe was charged with assaulting her, but she then started receiving phone calls from him and other unknown numbers, Sgt Mulligan said.
These calls involved threats of violence if she didn’t drop the assaults charges against McCabe.
In one phone call, a man who claimed he wasn’t McCabe told her she had a week to leave the country or her whole family – including her daughter – would be shot.
In another call, McCabe asked her to drop the assault charges against her and she refused. She later received another call saying she had 24 hours to leave the country or her family would “get it”.
A garda investigation identified a phone number used to make the calls to the victim and the details of the top-ups. One of those top-ups was made at a Londis shop on Parkgate Street beside the Criminal Courts of Justice on a day McCabe was due in court.
McCabe was then seen on CCTV footage buying a mobile top-up in the Londis shop on that date.
He initially denied making any threats to gardaí and was “angry” at the thought of a threat being made against a child, the court heard.
McCabe has 34 previous convictions including assault, possession of ammunition, production of an article and road traffic offences.
In a statement handed into court, McCabe’s ex-partner said the threats made her seriously consider proceeding with the case against him. She said she was in fear for herself and her family at the time, and was afraid to let her daughter out of her sight.
Sentencing him today, Judge Melanie Greally suspended the final year of a five year prison term on condition that McCabe keep the peace for two years after his release and engage with the Probation Service programmes, including one for anger management.
She also ordered that he have no contact with the victim or her family and that he inform the Probation Service if he begins a new intimate relationship.
McCabe also admitted unlawful possession of five shotgun cartridges at his home on 23 November, 2017. Judge Greally imposed a similar sentence for this offence.
Defence barrister, John Berry BL, said his client had alcohol and drug issues at the time of his offending, but that he is now drug-free in custody. He sought to adjourn the matter for a few months to allow for a number of reports to be prepared.
Judge Greally said that McCabe was exposed to very damaging influences and “very adverse circumstances” in his youth. She said she accepted as genuine the remorse expressed by him in a letter to the court.
The sentences today are to run concurrently to each other but consecutive to the termination of his current prison term, imposed in May 2019.
Judge Greally said she was taking into consideration a number of mitigating factors including McCabe’s expressions of remorse, the steps he has taken while in custody to better himself and his difficult childhood.