Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 22 October 2014

Woman who hit OAP dad on head with ashtray guilty of assault

A woman accused of hitting her elderly father over the head with a glass ashtray has been found guilty of assault.

Belfast Magistrates Court yesterday heard Helen Redpath (44) launched the attack at the family’s home last November following a row about late-night noise.

Her 72-year-old father Alfred Redpath told how he was awakened by voices before hearing his daughter on the phone in the hallway directly beneath his bedroom.

Mr Redpath claimed he could also smell smoke, even though smoking was only allowed in the kitchen area of their house at Waterloo Gardens, north Belfast.

Giving evidence last week, he said he went downstairs after asking Ms Redpath to keep her voice down.

He told the court his daughter first “went at him” with the telephone receiver.

“She then swung the glass ashtray she had been using at me,” Mr Redpath said.

Telling the court it struck him on the head, Mr Redpath added: “There was some foul language used about my parenthood.”

Mr Redpath, who suffers from a heart condition and diabetes, described how he was left badly shaken by the incident.

Asked how he felt about the case, he replied: “I’m not very happy about this.

“I would say this is the second saddest day of my life, to see my daughter in there.”

The accused denied the assault allegations and rejected his claims that she was drinking heavily earlier that day.

Ms Redpath, currently listed as being of no fixed abode, told the court she had been having a peaceful evening with her mother watching television and reading newspapers.

She had taken a couple of glasses of wine with dinner and another couple later in the evening, the court heard.

Ms Redpath also revealed her reason for being on the phone was to leave a message on a BBC comment line about a programme.

“To say I was screaming or shouting at anyone is not correct,” she insisted.

After hearing both sides District Judge Fiona Bagnall found the accused guilty of the assault charge.

Ms Redpath will be sentenced next month.

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