Belfast Telegraph

Kept off the streets: suspect with 227 crimes to his name

By Eamonn Macdermott

A man with a staggering 227 previous convictions for a range of offences including many of violence has been refused bail at Londonderry's Magistrates Court.

Patrick James Morgan (39), of Churchill Road in Ballykelly, was charged with four assaults and a series of driving charges which were alleged to have occurred on October 26 last year.

A police officer opposed bail, stating they feared Morgan would reoffend.

He told the court that police were called to an address in Ballykelly where a female in a distressed state told them that Morgan, who was her partner, had arrived drunk and kicked her in the face and punched her.

Another witness said that Morgan then drove off.

The woman was taken away in an ambulance and police went to Morgan's address where he was found sleeping.

A car matching the description given by the victim was found parked outside and there was blood smeared on the windscreen.

Police arrested Morgan for a series of driving offences and common assault.

As they were arresting him they found a key to the car in his pocket.

An evidential breath sample revealed Morgan to be almost three times over the limit.

Defence solicitor Jarrett Greene said his client would have spent a significant period in custody by the time the case was dealt with.

He also revealed that a previous partner, who was seeking a reconciliation with Morgan, had offered her home as a bail address.

The woman was also at the address where the alleged assault was carried out and has withdrawn a statement claiming he also assaulted her.

Deputy District Judge Anne Marshall said yesterday that given Morgan's atrocious record, and on the driving offences alone, there was great difficulty in the court granting bail.

She refused the application and Morgan will appear again on March 6.

The number of Morgan's offences averages out at an incredible one a month for his entire adult life from the age of 17.

More than half stem from motoring offences and he is currently disqualified from driving.

He also has numerous convictions for violence, including assaults on police.

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