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Man who called police after strangling his partner sentenced

A man who called police after strangling his partner has been handed a three-year probation order.

A judge commented that this was an “unusual case” as the 30-year-old made admissions to police through a phone call, yet there had not been a complaint made by the injured party.

Joseph Paul McKenna, 30, of Hunters Hill Park, Gilford pleaded guilty to common assault at Craigavon Crown Court on Monday.

This had originally been a charge of attempted murder but was reduced to an indictable common assault.

Her honour Judge Donna McColgan stated: “This is a highly unusual case but it has to be judged on the defendant’s culpability.

“It has been heard that redness was observed on the injured parties neck, although there is no knowledge of the direct emotional impact on her as she did not make a complaint.

“However, the defendant made a phone call to police in which he made admissions.

“This is a very serious offence given the nature of the assault, the domestic setting and Mr McKenna’s relevant convictions.”

Judge McColgan acknowledged that this was a plea at the earliest opportunity and that the defendant showed “clear genuine remorse”.

She stated: “I am of the view that the defendant needs help; since 2011 he has availed of various help in anger management, community addiction, and psychiatric reports.”

Judge McColgan sentenced McKenna to three years of probation – the maximum length for such an order.

She told the defendant that he was to engage in any work that probation deemed necessary during that time.

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