Belfast Telegraph

Alcoholic knife attack accused is refused High Court bail

By Ashleigh McDonald

A 43-year-old man accused of breaking into a house in Co Down before lunging at another man twice with a knife has been refused High Court bail.

Gary William Neill, from Wandsworth Crescent in Belfast, applied for but was refused bail last month.

A second application was made yesterday, on the grounds that Neill be released from custody to allow him to attend a six-week residential treatment course to try and tackle his alcohol addiction.

Telling the court that it was the Crown's case that when drunk Neill was an "irrational person" who used knives, a prosecutor said Neill currently faced a charge of aggravated burglary with intent to cause grievous bodily harm, and also possessing an amount of cannabis.

Neill was arrested after police were called to a house in the James Street area of Newtownards on the afternoon of June 12, 2014.

The Crown believe Neill entered the house and went upstairs before asking the female resident where her partner was.

He is accused of then walking out into the back garden, locating the male occupant and lunging at him twice with a knife.

The prosecutor said a struggle then ensued between the two men, during which the knife was "wrestled" from Neill, who left the house via the front door.

It is alleged that when police called at Neill's house later that day, he refused to come outside.

Officers noticed several knives in the house, and when he was eventually arrested and searched, a small amount of cannabis was allegedly found.

The prosecutor said that after he was arrested, Neill said he had had a "fair dig" in Ards and that £100 had been stolen from him.

However, he later denied making the statement and accused the police officer of lying.

The court heard the Crown had several objections to bail being granted. Lord Justice Higgins refused the application.

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