Two children testify against their father

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A Portadown man was convicted of assaulting his own son after two of his children had to give evidence against him.

Craigavon Court heard last Friday that the case against the 46-year-old man had to be heard as a contest.

The defendant, whose address was given as Westland Road, was convicted of the assault at a previous hearing and sentencing adjourned for a pre-sentence report.

Last Friday’s court was told that on November 6 last year just before 7pm the injured party said he had been slapped in the face by his father. There were no visible injuries.

The defendant was arrested and cautioned and admitted pulling a pillow away from the injured party and grabbing him by the arm but not assaulting him.

District Judge, Mr Mervyn Bates, said the matter was aggravated by the fact this was a breach of trust case and two children had to give evidence.

He indicated that the pre-sentence report indicated the defendant intended to appeal the conviction.

Judge Bates said because of the breach of trust he would consider a custodial sentence.

He imposed a prison term of three months but suspended it for two years in view of the defendant’s long clear record. The defendant was also fined £300.

Judge Bates told the defendant he had a right to appeal but, having put his children through this, he should consider the way forward with his legal advisors.

The defendant’s barrister applied for bail to appeal against the conviction.Bail was set at £500 with the condition that he did not have any contact with the injured party or any witness.