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Keady man who assaulted ex-partner’s two teenage sons handed suspended sentence

The deputy district judge said: 'These were very unpleasant assaults on two boys who were faced with you abusing their mother'

Armagh Courthouse

A Keady man who assaulted his ex-partner’s two teenage sons after taking umbrage at her talking to another man has been handed a suspended sentence.

The 25-year-old’s barrister informed court that the defendant had been “infatuated” with the female, who was 20 years his senior, and that alcohol had played a factor.

Francie Shortt, of Fairgreen, appeared for sentencing on two counts of common assault and resisting police at Armagh Magistrates’, sitting at Newry.

Prosecution outlined that on the evening of November 4, 2018, the defendant had been socialising in the Keady area and his then partner was talking to a male, which he took umbrage at.

Shortt then followed the female home. He was asked to leave several times but failed to do so.

Upon hearing this, the female’s teenage son came downstairs and was knocked to the ground after the defendant punched him to the face.

A short time later, the paths of Shortt and another of his partner’s sons crossed, with the defendant on this occasion punching the younger sibling to the head and chest, before making off.

Both injured parties were seen by ambulance staff; the first victim had bruising to the left eye and the second swelling to the head and ribs.

Several addresses were checked but police were unable to locate Shortt. He was arrested the following day in a bar in Armagh and tried to make off prior to being detained.

Defence barrister Patrick Taggart explained that the defendant accepted the offences despite denying the second assault to probation and said he did so as he was “ashamed”.

He stated: “A row started after Mr Shortt became jealous of his then partner talking to another male. He is sorry for his actions.”

The barrister commented that the defendant had been “infatuated” with the female, who was 20 years his senior, and that alcohol had played a factor.

Mr Taggart also informed the court that Shortt was currently subject to a combination order, consisting of community service and probation, which was handed down by the Crown Court.

Deputy District Judge Philip Mateer stated: “You are due some credit for you eventual guilty plea. These were very unpleasant assaults on two boys who were faced with you abusing their mother.

“The best point which has been made is how the Crown Court has dealt with you subsequently.”

Shortt was sentenced to two months in prison suspended for three years.

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