A Fermanagh man, who admitted charges of burglary, assault, handling stolen property, damage to property, attempted damage to property, driving while unfit, driving with no insurance, and criminal damage has been jailed for 18 months at Dungannon Crown Court.
26 year-old Michael Leonard, with an address at Maghera, County Derry, was jailed for 18 months for burglary.
At a previous Fermanagh Court sitting, his address was given as, Cordalla Road, Lisnaskea.
But Judge Paul Ramsey ruled at Dungannon Crown Court last Thursday that the defendant be released on licence after nine months.
The defendant, who had been in custody since last July, was given a total of 12 jail sentences of twelve and nine months for those other offences that all happened on July 6 last year.
All those sentences were to run concurrently.
He was also banned from driving for three months for having no insurance.
That earlier sitting heard that Leonard, who was due to become a father on July 30 last year, was out of jail on Crown Court licence when he committed a “litany of violent offences”.
That sitting heard 17 charges read out against Leonard.
Leonard subsequently admitted having a Toyota Jeep stolen in the Republic and driving it while unfit through drink or drugs and without a licence or insurance on July 6 last year.
The 26 year-old defendant, also admitted entering a house on the Clones Road, Newtownbutler, as a burglar and trying to steal a Honda vehicle worth £1,000.
He also admitted assaulting two ambulance paramedics, spitting at them and during an assault on police officers he tried to bite one officer and head-butted another while he was being strip -searched.
The crime spree arose after police were alerted to a single vehicle crash involving a stolen Toyota jeep.
When ambulance crew went to Leonard’s aid, he assaulted them and on arrival of the South West Acute Hospital he threatened to damage property and assault medical staff.
At that previous sitting, defence counsel Stefan Rafferty said his client was on a mixture of medication and alcohol and was a man who was “not without his problems”
In jailing the defendant at Dungannon Crown Court last Thursday, Judge Ramsey said that Leonard had a favourable probation report.
The judge said the most serious off all the offences was the burglary that was of a “fleeting and momentary nature”
He complimented the injured party on her resourcefulness.
The judge also noted that the injured party felt sorry for the defendant.
But the judge added that the defendant also attacked everybody he met including medical personnel and police officers.
Judge Ramsey said the defendant had major drink and drugs issues but had used his time in prison well.
He was determined to turn his life around
The one negative factor was the break up of his relationship which was now estranged and that had been a stabilizing influence on him when he was in custody.
The judge said it was fortunate for the defendant that the burglary was fleeting.
He added that the defendant had written a letter to the court that was quite remarkable as he had been virtually illiterate until his recent entry into prison.
The letter was very remorseful and he profusely apologised to all those he had attacked.
The judge said it was clear the defendant wanted to change his ways.
In sentencing Leonard, who has been in jail previously, the judge said it was clear he had addiction issues.
Judge Ramsey added that Leonard must keep away from drugs and alcohol and must also wear an electronic tag and must also remain at whatever address he is released into.
The judge said if Leonard did not abide by his conditions on release, he would be back in jail “as sure as night follows day”.
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