A man accused of assaulting and threatening to kill his wife – currently undergoing treatment for cancer – has been denied bail.
Cristian Mitricosta, of Portmore Street in Craigavon, appeared before Craigavon Magistrates’ Court on Friday charged with common assault, possession of an offensive weapon and two counts of threats to kill.
The 48-year-old, through the use of a Romanian interpreter, denied the offences which allegedly occurred on January 27 of this year and again on May 9.
His defence solicitor argued that the injured party in the case had not made any written statement and “has expressly told police that she doesn’t want the matter to proceed and she has no intention of engaging in the process”.
He added: “It’s one of those difficult situations where you have a complaint to police but you have the injured party expressly saying to police, I won’t be coming to court and I do not want to engage.
“Again, in relation to the new allegation the injured party has refused to issue a statement of complaint and has told police she won’t be engaging. I accept that the [home] address is a no-go at this stage but I can tell you this morning that the Simon Community has accepted my client for placement in one of their hostels if bail is granted.
“If bail is granted, there will be a significant geographical separation, which did seem to work on the previous occasion.”
The defence solicitor added that his client denies the allegations against him and “given the injured party’s attitude, I would imagine she would not attend court and she has expressly said that to police”.
However, a prosecution solicitor contended that there were other ways to consider the case and referenced possible body-worn footage.
District Judge Bernie Kelly said: “I accept that these are always difficult cases and that there is an indication at an early stage that the injured party is unlikely to co-operate. However, there is enough evidence, in various studies out there, to show that for an awful lot of victims of domestic violence, that it’s not until they acquire a safe space, that they find themselves able to cooperate with the criminal justice system.
“Regardless of the relationship between the injured party and the defendant the breach of bail relates to consumption of alcohol which he was specifically barred from doing and that is a clear breach of the bail conditions he was previously under.
“So it shows that he has no regard for court orders and I have been asked to impose another court order, which I am now being told, for some reason for which I cannot fathom, he’s going to obey this time when he didn’t obey the last one.
“And in the last feature in this mix, which is probably the hardest bit to understand, is the fact this lady is undergoing treatment for cancer and he can’t remain sober enough long enough to support her, regardless of the fact he is accused of a further criminal offence with her as the injured party.”
District Judge Kelly concluded: “I don’t deem he’s a suitable candidate because I think the risk of further offending is exceptionally high, interference with witnesses is exceptionally high and the likelihood of adhering to bail conditions, exceptionally low.”
Mitricosta is due back in court on May 26.