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Father who attacked the home of his late son's boyfriend given suspended sentence

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A grieving dad who attacked the home of his late son's boyfriend on Christmas Eve has been handed a suspended four month jail sentence

A grieving dad who attacked the home of his late son's boyfriend on Christmas Eve has been handed a suspended four month jail sentence

A grieving dad who attacked the home of his late son's boyfriend on Christmas Eve has been handed a suspended four month jail sentence

A grieving dad who attacked the home of his late son's boyfriend on Christmas Eve has been handed a suspended four month jail sentence.

Antrim Crown Court Judge Patricia Smyth told Coleraine man Terry Geddis (50) she was certain his offences "are rooted in serious mental ill health caused by tragedy".

Geddis' son Zachary was aged just 20 when he took his own life in March 2017. Since then, his karate instructor father set up the Zachary Geddis Break the Silence Trust, which aims to tackle suicide.

"All of the evidence points to this being out of character," said the judge who also ordered Geddis to pay £159.99 compensation for a door he damaged.

At an earlier hearing Geddis, from Somerset Court, admitted common assault, making a threat to kill, and causing criminal damage to property belonging to Geoff Arnold on December 24, 2018.

Judge Smyth described how Mr Arnold was in his front room at around 3.20pm when Geddis got out of a van.

"Mr Arnold heard you shout, 'Where is that f*****, I'm going to f****** kill that f*****'," said the judge. Geddis broke a glass panel and letter box in the front door.

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Geddis was said to be "in a complete rage" and Mr Arnold was "extremely fearful".

Judge Smyth said it "appears to be that Tom Arnold had been in a relationship with your son who very tragically, had taken his own life".

Yesterday, Judge Smyth added that it was clear that the Geddis family as a whole "have been tortured acutely by unanswered questions" surrounding the death and how the defendant has been "deeply and profoundly" affected.

Judge Smyth told Geddis that while the custody threshold had been passed, in view of his clear record and the root cause of the offences, she would suspend his prison sentence for a year.


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