Kildare man jailed after making hammer threat at Naas estate

Defendant was charged with possession of a hammer with the intent to commit a burglary, and with threatening someone with the same hammer

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Kildare man jailed after making hammer threat at Naas estate

The case was heard in Naas

A Naas man was sentenced to three years at Naas Circuit Court last Friday, July 6.

John Marsden, 39, with an address listed as 19 Ashgrove Drive, Naas, was charged with possession of a hammer with intent to commit burglary and with threatening somebody with the same hammer at Ashgrove Drive on March 24, 2017.

At an earlier date, Mr Marsden had pleaded not guilty to the charge, and following a trial in front of a jury, was found guilty of the offence.

At his sentencing last Friday, Garda Eoin McGrath outlined that on the day in question, the son of another resident of Ashgrove Drive, Mr Gleeson, spotted a man who turned out to be Mr Marsden, running down the side of another house in the estate.

Grabbing a golf club, Mr Gleeson went after the defendant and approached him in the garden of the other house.

The defendant was putting on black gloves and when confronted he brushed past Mr Gleeson and walked briskly back towards his own house.

At his own house he attempted to get up on the roof of the garage and Mr Gleeson pulled him back by his hoodie a number of times.

Eventually, the court heard, Mr Marsden turned to him, took the hammer from his jacket and said “come on so”.

At that point, Mr Gleeson backed away and said something to the effect that the defendant wasn’t worth it.

Acting for the defendant Sarah Connolly BL outlined that her client had been long term drug addict, in particular, heroin.

In an eloquent letter read to the judge, Mr Marsden outlined how since he had gone off drugs, he had had an “epiphany of hindsight” and was now a “very different person” from the person who committed the crime.

He acknowledged that his drug taking had damaged his family life, with his wife and son moving away from him. He said he had pleaded guilty because he had no recollection of the events. He pleaded for leniency from Judge Michael O’Shea.

The Judge noted the defendant’s progress in going cold turkey, his engagement with education in prison and his work helping other prisoners with literacy issues, saying her deserved credit for this.

“To his credit, he has accepted responsibility for his actions and accepted the jury’s verdict,” the judge said, before giving him two three year concurrent sentences — but with one year suspended from both.

He backdated the sentences to June 28.