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Man arrested with knife in west Belfast 'made Facebook threats to kill brother' court hears

By Alan Erwin

A man arrested with a knife in west Belfast had allegedly made Facebook threats to kill his brother, a court heard today.

Eamon McKee, 28, was detained on Thursday night following social media exchanges his lawyer described as just two siblings "puffing their chests out".

The 28-year-old, of Corrib Avenue in the Lenadoon district, appeared before Belfast Magistrates' Court charged with threats to kill and possessing a blade or point in the Beechmount Walk area.

He was granted bail but banned from any contact with the alleged victim.

Police had opposed McKee's release, claiming there risks to his safety and that of his brother.

The court heard the accused had tried to commit suicide over the Christmas period.

"That together with the fact he threatened his own brother and was carrying a knife would be our main concerns," a PSNI constable said.

Defence solicitor Paul Farrell argued that McKee had told police about the blade in his pocket when they arrived at the scene close to his mother's home.

Mr Farrell claimed the alleged threat on Facebook was provoked by similar comments from the alleged victim.

"The police case is the defendant sent a photograph of himself holding a knife to his brother, making veiled threats of 'I will see you' and things along those lines," he told the court.

"It's two brothers effectively puffing their chests out against each other."

He added that his client only had the knife for possible self-harm.

Granting bail, Deputy District Judge Peter Prenter imposed a curfew and ordered McKee to seek any mental health treatment his GP feels is required.

He also told the accused: "You are to have no contact with the injured party directly, indirectly or on social media."

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