Belfast Telegraph

'Danger to the public' conducted a campaign of terror against woman of 81 and daughter, court hears

By Alan Erwin

An 81-year-old and her daughter were attacked and subjected to a campaign of terror by a former neighbour, a court was told.

Morrison Wilson is alleged to have driven his car at the pair before leaving the vehicle and assaulting them near Belfast city centre on Monday.

As the pensioner lay on the ground, the 59-year-old is alleged to have told her: "I'll stamp on your head - I'll f****** kill you."

Wilson, from Meeting House Lane in Lisburn, Co Antrim, is charged with assault occasioning actual bodily harm to Margaret McMillan and a common assault on her daughter, Eleanor.

The defendant faces further counts of disorderly behaviour, assault on police, resisting arrest and criminal damage to another motorist's car.

Appearing in the dock at Belfast Magistrates Court dressed in a bright pink and yellow T-shirt and wearing sunglasses, heavy-set Wilson spoke only to confirm he understood the charges against him.

The alleged offences are said to have occurred in the Queen's Bridge area, which is close to the defendant's former home in the east of the city.

A PSNI officer strenuously opposed bail, claiming there was a high risk Wilson would interfere with witnesses.

The officer said there was a history of incidents between Wilson, Mrs McMillan and her 50-year-old daughter.

"We believe that there's a campaign of terror regarding these same injured parties," she added. "This man was seen to drive at the injured parties."

Citing further concerns that Wilson may flee if released, the constable said the defendant told police at the scene that he had money in his car and planned to "emigrate tomorrow".

Another witness allegedly heard him issue threats to Mrs McMillan while she was lying on the ground.

"It's extremely disturbing - we believe he presents a danger to these people and also to the public," the policewoman said.

But defence solicitor Michael Madden stressed that Wilson had not been charged with making any threats to kill.

He said his client, who has mental health problems, spotted the McMillans when he was driving in the city centre. Mr Madden added that the defendant then decided to quiz the mother and daughter about a previous Press report unconnected with court proceedings.

"He then foolishly got out of the car to confront the injured party to ask why was this inaccurate information being reported," the solicitor said.

Mr Madden also argued that the pensioner's injuries occurred when Wilson fell after another party at the scene intervened.

But District Judge Fiona Bagnall refused bail after being shown photographs of the woman's wounds.

She said: "He's undoubtedly a danger to the injured parties and probably to the public as well."

Wilson was remanded in custody to appear again in court on October 28.

Belfast Telegraph

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