Drug addict who pestered public at Ballymena Train Station has sentence deferred upon appeal

Ballymena Bus and Rail Centre
Ballymena Bus and Rail Centre

A drug addict pestering the public for money at Ballymena Train Station at 7am on a Bank Holiday who had been given a five months jail term has, upon appeal, had his sentence deferred until January.

In May at Ballymena Magistrates Court John Monroe (36), with an address at Lever Park in Portstewart, admitted a charge of disorderly behaviour and was given a five months jail sentence.

He appealed the sentence and at the County Court in Coleraine on Monday sentence was deferred.

The May hearing heard Monroe started shouting and swearing at a female staff member at the train station before throwing a shoe, leaving her upset and in tears.

A prosecutor said police were requested to attend Ballymena Train Station at 7am on Monday August 28 last year because a disruptive member of the public was swearing and shouting at a staff member and he was also stopping and asking people for money.

The earlier Magistrates Court heard Monroe even tried to scrounge cash from the staff member but he left before police arrived.

However, he returned in a “more agitated” state and again shouted and swore at the same staff member before following her into a waiting room.

Monroe threw a shoe at her and told her: “Do you think I don’t know where you live?”.

The prosecutor said the staff member was “upset and crying”.

Monroe was later located in the Harryville area of Ballymena and was “unrepentant” at what he had done.

Defence barrister Andrew Moriarty told the Magistrates Court his client had problems with alcohol and drugs and wished to apologise for his actions.

District Judge Nigel Broderick told the May court Monroe had an “appalling record” and there had been a late guilty plea.

He told Monroe: “This was very poor behaviour. Confronting a female attendant doing her job is unacceptable”.

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