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Markethill man who broke glass pane in door after row with girlfriend slated for ‘appalling’ attitude to women

The district judge imposed a jail term and said she had never read a worse presentence report in 25 years

A Markethill man who kicked in a glass pane of a door after an argument with the mother of his child has been handed a suspended prison sentence.

Prior to sentencing the 28-year-old, the district judge remarked that the pre-sentence report before her was the worst she had seen in 25 years, commenting the attitude towards women in it was “appalling” for someone the defendant’s age.

Christopher Orr, of Newry Street, pleaded guilty to criminal damage at Craigavon Magistrates’ Court on Friday.

Court heard that on November 17, police were called to a domestic incident at an address on Westland Road in Portadown.

The injured party told police that she had a verbal argument with her boyfriend which escalated to the defendant kicking the pane of a glass door shattering it in the process.

Orr was subsequently arrested for the offence of criminal damage.

During interview, he admitted to the offence stating that he had lost his temper and broke the glass pane with his foot.

District Judge Bernie Kelly commented: “In 25 years, would anyone like to guess how many pre-sentence reports I have read? I have never read one worse than this.”

She asked Orr: “How many pregnancies have you had?”

From the dock, the defendant stated: “One.”

District Judge Kelly said: “I take it you mean none. It is absolutely horrific that in the 21st century he expects the mother of his child, with severe postnatal depression, to do it all and humour him at the same time.

“Unlike her, there was always a solution to his problem and her’s. He could have left.”

She added: “Her problem is the natural effect of the change in her hormones post giving birth, his is an effect of taking a number of different drugs over a number of years.”

Defence counsel stated: “He has type one diabetes, he needs four injections a day. It was his belief that this prevented him from engaging in community service but I have informed him this is not the case.

“This was an argument that escalated, he had gone outside to cool down but upon realising he had locked himself out he lost his temper.”

He added: “He hasn’t been able to work for two years but he had played a part in his child’s life up to the point of this incident.”

District Judge Kelly said: “I don’t want to hear it. He told probation he had to do everything as all she wanted to do was lie in bed.”

Addressing the defendant, she stated: “Mr Orr, about maybe two or three generations ago the view among males was that women were there to do everything for men. They thought all they had to do was turn up.

“Women did the cooking, the cleaning, the rearing of children and men went to the pub. Upon returning they would find a warm meal and a clean bed.”

She continued: “You can shake your head all you want, the attitude in this report is appalling for someone your age, everything was going great in the relationship until, guess what, a baby comes about.

“It’s called maturity, it’s called responsibility, to use any excuse of your depression against that of your partner who had severe postnatal depression is appalling.”

Orr was sentenced to four months in prison suspended for two years.

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