A woman has obtained a restraining order against her former partner after telling a court that the man, who has 31 domestic violence charges against him, may be temporarily released from prison.
The woman told Dublin District Family Court on Friday that she was “terribly afraid” of the man. Before he was sent to prison, she said the man had sent her 548 text messages in a month that were “abusive” and “threatening” and had “begged” him to come back to her home.
The woman said the man had been temporarily released from prison several times and had been stalking her during those periods.
“He came to my house under the influence of alcohol and drugs. I had to change jobs because he kept showing up at my workplace and I was terrified,” she said. “I was afraid to leave my home because I don’t know what he’s capable of and he’s always hanging around.”
In an affidavit, the woman said before he was sent to prison on domestic violence charges, the man was “on alcohol and cocaine binges and kept me and my daughter up all night every night.”
The woman said her and her daughter’s mental health had “deteriorated greatly” as a result of his behavior. She said her daughter started harming herself. The woman told the court that the man was due to be released next year, but he had recently told the daughter that he was seeking temporary release.
The court heard that they were never married and that the woman’s family owns the house where she and her daughter live.
Judge Gerard Furlong said he would give the woman an interim ban on an ex parte (only one side represented) basis, banning the man from the property and from guarding or staying in the vicinity for eight days.
He said neither he nor the woman knew if and when the former partner would receive temporary release.
“There is a possibility that it could happen imminently and for that reason I will give you the order,” the judge said. “We don’t normally issue orders that aren’t implemented… but there’s no way of knowing exactly when he’ll be released.”
The judge said if the man was released he did not believe a security order would be appropriate and that he was erring on the side of caution. A security order would prohibit the man from using or threatening violence.
A full hearing, which the man is expected to attend, has been scheduled for a later date. The judge also said he would issue an arrest warrant, meaning the man would be brought to court for a hearing if he was still in custody.
In a separate case heard at the court in Dolphin House, Dublin 2, on Friday, a woman obtained a security order against her former partner after she said the man “repeatedly strangled” her in front of their young child.
The woman said the man had been unwilling to behave civilly since their relationship ended and he had “terrorized” her every time they met to gain access to the child.
“The abuse happens constantly, even in front of family and friends,” she said. “He keeps ringing without caller ID and threatening me so much that I am afraid of him as he is a violent man and has hit me several times.”
The woman said on one occasion earlier this year: “He strangled me repeatedly… to the point where I kept passing out.”
The judge mutually granted the woman an urgent security order and scheduled a full hearing, which the man is expected to attend, for a later date.
The judge also told the woman that there was currently no court order allowing the man to have access to her child and that she was the sole carer and guardian. “Until he ever gets a court order for access, you are responsible [of the child],” he told her.
The judge said he was not saying the woman did not give the man access to her child, but could say access would only occur in situations where she felt “happy and safe.”