Belfast Telegraph

Drunk knife-wielding Tyrone woman threatened neighbours, court told

By Alan Erwin

A woman threatened to kill two foreign nationals with a knife after her partner slashed their Lithuanian neighbour's car tyres, the High Court has heard.

Kerri Hackett ran at one of the females with a blade amid scenes of chaos on their street in Dungannon, Co Tyrone, prosecutors said.

Details of the incident on March 19 emerged as the 40-year-old accused was granted bail yesterday.

Hackett, of Killymaddy Hill in the town, faces charges of disorderly behaviour, common assault, possession of a blade, threats to kill and threats to damage property.

The court heard her partner went into the home of a Lithuanian family living next door and smashed plant pots before falling asleep on the floor of the kitchen.

A drunken Hackett also then came in and slept at a table for two hours before being wakened by a punch from her boyfriend, it was alleged.

Crown lawyer Philip Henry said the woman living there was subjected to vile language when she tried to get them to leave for the sake of her children.

Eventually, she got the pair out of her home and locked the doors, according to the prosecution.

Mr Henry claimed Hackett's partner then returned, demanding the keys to the neighbour's car before slashing all four tyres on the vehicle with a knife. Two other foreign national women who witnessed his actions were allegedly told: "I'm coming for you now, it's your turn."

Amid the commotion Hackett allegedly reappeared armed with a butter knife.

"She said: 'I'm going to kill you, you foreign b*******', Mr Henry claimed.

And he added: "She also ran at one of the female neighbours with the knife raised above her head."

One of the witnesses retreated back into her home as attempts were made to get inside, Mr Justice Maguire was told at the bail hearing.

Mr Henry added: "This (bail) applicant kicked and banged against the door for some time... making threats to kill the lady and her family.

"The witness described the scene as one of chaos."

Hackett denied the allegations following her arrest, claiming the statements against her were all lies.

Defence counsel Stephen Toal contended that his client, Hackett, was in an abusive relationship with a "domineering" co-accused he described as the prime-mover in the incident.

"This lady is quite a vulnerable individual with serious mental health difficulties," he told the court.

Granting bail, Mr Justice Maguire stressed the seriousness of the alleged offences.

He pointed out: "Any involvement in matters of this sort is to be deprecated."

Belfast Telegraph

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