Belfast Telegraph

Man back in dock after he escaped from courthouse

By George Jackson

A man who escaped from custody after he appeared before Londonderry's magistrates last week was back in the same court yesterday.

Dean Beattie from Glenowen Park scaled two security fences outside the Bishop Street courthouse before sprinting down the street and fleeing down Palace Street last Wednesday.

The 22-year-old was remanded in custody at the same court yesterday. He had not been handcuffed at the time of his escape. Since then, the police had been actively seeking to establish his whereabouts.

Beattie was eventually found in a house on the city side area of Derry on Tuesday morning.

Following his arrest and interview by detectives, he appeared before District Judge Barney McElholm on two charges linked to his escape.

He was charged that on December 23 he escaped from lawful custody contrary to the Prison Act (Northern Ireland) 1953.

He was further charged with intimidating a male witness with intent to pervert, obstruct or interfere with the course of justice. He is alleged to have committed that offence on Monday of this week, five days after his escape.

The male witness Beattie is alleged to have intimidated is also the man Beattie is alleged to have assaulted in a flat in the Northland Road area of the city on December 12.

A woman was also allegedly assaulted in the same incident.

Beattie is one of two men accused of assaulting the couple, stealing their Christmas presents, possessing a firearm and a knife and stealing £100 and two mobile phones from them.

His co-defendant is already in custody on the same charges.

Beattie was released on licence from jail last month by the Parole Commissioners.

He had been serving a sentence for dishonesty offences and his licence has since been revoked.

A detective constable told District Judge McElholm that he believed he could connect Beattie to the two new charges.

He also confirmed to the judge that a bench warrant had been issued and executed for Beattie's arrest following his escape.

There was no application for bail and Beattie was remanded to appear before the same court on January 21 via video link.

with Trevor McBride photo

Belfast Telegraph


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