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Guilty plea Dad chased man into shop and made threats after petrol bombing incident

Clarke (45), of Moneymore, Drogheda, Co Louth, pleaded guilty to threatening, abusive and insulting behaviour and failing to comply with Garda directions

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Joe Clarke of Moneymore, Drogheda, Co Louth, charged with public order offences.

Joe Clarke of Moneymore, Drogheda, Co Louth, charged with public order offences.

Joe Clarke of Moneymore, Drogheda, Co Louth, charged with public order offences.

A FATHER-of-two who chased a man into a shop, shouting that he would kill him, claimed the man had made a threat to him after the petrol bombing of his family home.

Joe Clarke's elderly mother had died from a house blaze before he bumped into the man, who threatened "he would be next," a court heard.

Clarke's defence said this was why he was chasing the man when he was arrested in Dublin city centre.

Judge Bryan Smyth fined him €300 at Dublin District Court.

Clarke (45), of Moneymore, Drogheda, Co Louth, pleaded guilty to threatening, abusive and insulting behaviour and failing to comply with Garda directions on May 10 this year.

Garda Sergeant Michelle Lynch said the accused chased a man into the Vodafone shop on Henry Street and staff had to block the door.

"Gardaí saw him shouting into the store, stating that he was going to kill this male," Sgt Lynch said.

A large crowd had gathered and gardaí told Clarke to leave.

He remained aggressive towards gardaí and "insisted he was going to kill the male in the store."

Judge Smyth asked the defence what this was "all about."

The defence said Clarke's home had burned to the ground as a result of a petrol bombing and his mother, who was 75 years old, died from smoke inhalation.

The accused's sister's home was also petrol bombed and another family member was shot, she said.

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Clarke "bumped into that individual" on Henry Street and he "got threatened by this individual that he would be next."

He was upset over the death of his mother and a row broke out. The defence said this all transpired after another family member got into a drug debt.

Clarke appreciated he should not have behaved the way he did, and apologised.

Judge Smyth said it was a "serious enough" breach of the peace.

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