A Lurgan man who shouted “Tiocfaidh ár lá” near a cenotaph during a parade has had sentencing deferred until later this year to see if he can behave and continue to address his problems.
Court heard that whilst in custody, the 37-year-old made the unsolicited comment that he “disagreed with those Orange b******* marching around celebrating the deaths of my ancestors”.
Michael Gerard McCreanor, of Lavery Avenue, pleaded guilty to driving whilst unfit, failing to provide a specimen, doing a provocative act, two counts of assault on police, two counts of disorderly behaviour and resisting police at Craigavon Magistrates’ on Friday.
The defendant was also convicted of one count of possession of a Class C drug after failing to produce evidence he had been prescribed the drug in question.
Prosecution outlined that at 2.50am on November 19, of 2019, police received a report from a member of the public regarding a suspected drink diver in a Volkswagen Bora on Highfield Road, Craigavon.
Officers located the vehicle and they observed as it swerved on the road and mounted a kerb.
Police spoke with the driver, who was identified as the defendant. A preliminary breath test returned a zero reading but a field impairment test resulted in a fail.
During a search of the vehicle, officers located eight Mirtazapine tablets.
Whilst en route to custody, McCreanor commented: “See how drowsy I am, I normally take them before bed I am glad you pulled me over.”
In custody, the defendant refused to provide a sample of blood for analysis.
During interview, McCreanor made admission to all offences except for the possession of Class C as he claimed to have been medically prescribed the drug in question.
Then at 11.10am on August 8, last year, police received a report from a member of the public regarding the behaviour of a male at a parade on Market Street in Lurgan.
She claimed this man had been filming himself whilst shouting “Tiocfaidh ár lá” and “up the RA” near the cenotaph.
The male was also observed to be making gestures with a rolled up newspaper, with the witness claiming he appeared to be pretending it was a shot gun which caused her fear and distress.
A photo was provided to police of the man in question and on August 9, at 1am, the defendant, who matched this image, was spotted by police on Edward Street in Lurgan.
Upon being approached, McCreanor stated that he would not co-operate and clenched his fists.
The defendant refused to calm down and had to be taken to the ground after attempting to headbutt one officer.
Whilst being restrained, McCreanor shouted “SSRUC” and kicked another officer in the stomach as he was placed in a police vehicle.
In custody, the defendant made the unsolicited comment that he “disagreed with those Orange b******* marching around celebrating the deaths of my ancestors”.
Handing in a reference from a close friend of the defendant, defence barrister Conor Coulter stated: “It is as good as a presentence report, in outlining his background and more pertinently his rehabilitation in behaviour.”
Addressing McCreanor, Deputy District Judge Chris Holmes said: “I am going to give you a chance. I am putting sentencing back six months to see if you can behave yourself and continue to address your problems.”
Sentencing in the cases was deferred until August 27.