Man concerned about ‘everyone gawping at him’ at gym fails in bid to get monitoring tag removed

A man has failed in a bid to get an electronic monitoring tag removed to stop “everyone gawping at him” when he goes to the gym.

Steven James Mitchell (30), of Mullan Road near Ballymoney, had a ban on entering the town relaxed so he can go to the Joey Dunlop Leisure Centre as he long as he does not venture further into Ballymoney.

However, Deputy District Judge Austin Kennedy refused to remove the tag.

Defence solicitor Sam Barr said the defendant wanted the tag removed “so he can go to the leisure centre without everyone gawping at him” and didn’t want the monitor sticking out “like a sore thumb”.

Judge Kennedy said the defendant clearly needed to be monitored which prompted Mitchell to ask from the dock at Coleraine Magistrates Court: “How can I attend the gym with a tag on?”

Sam Barr told the court: “I’m sure he will be able to struggle.”

The defendant faces a number of charges including entering his ex-partner’s home in Ballymoney with intent to do damage.

He is also charged with two assaults, an assault on police and causing criminal damage to a baby monitor, TV and a police cell on March 3 this year.

A police officer told the court that around 5.30pm on March 3 this year police received a 999 call from an alleged injured party reporting that her ex-partner had come to her house.

The woman was shocked to see Mitchell approach the house and locked the back door and said she would ring the police and recorded him on her mobile phone.

Mitchell then climbed through a kitchen window and whilst the woman had her ten-month-old daughter she was allegedly assaulted and damage was caused to a baby monitor.

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