Tipperary court: man was bathing in river near Roscrea town centre

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Tipperary court: man was bathing in river near Roscrea town centre

Nenagh Courthouse

A man was observed washing himself in the Bunnow River in Roscrea town early in the morning, Nenagh Court was told.

Thomas Clarke, with addresses at The White House, Main Street, Roscrea, and 24c Ormond Drive, Nenagh, pleaded to bathing in public in the river at Lourdes Road, Roscrea, on October 20, 2016.

The court heard that Mr Clarke was observed washing himself at 6.55am.

Judge Elizabeth MacGrath said she noted the hour of the morning and would strike out the charge, which was brought under Section 5 of the Public Order Act.

“He didn't mean any offence to anybody,” she said.

Mr Clarke pleaded to two counts of being in charge of a bicycle in Nenagh on March 25, 2018.

The court heard that he was stopped by the Gardai at Kenyon Street after he was observed cycling his bike in an erratic manner. Mr Clarke agreed not to cycle again but was stopped shortly after on Sarsfield Street, again cycling in an erratic manner.

He also pleaded to threatening, abusive and insulting behaviour at Sarsfield Street on the same date.

He also pleaded to threatening, abusive and insulting behaviour at Nenagh Courthouse on April 13, 2018.

His solicitor, David Peters, told the court that Mr Clarke had been involved in a serious traffic accident in 2008 and had been left with acquired brain injury and short term memory problems.

“That could explain his interactions on March 25,” he said.

He had been homeless when he was caught bathing in Roscrea, he said.

Mr Peters said his client was very polite and liked his own company but did get defensive when people were around him.

“He needs a lot of counselling,” said Mr Peters.

Mr Clarke loved history, the Church and his faith, said the solicitor.

“People would know him and he is generally well behaved,” he said.

A Headways programme had been made available to him, but Mr Clarke had not taken up the offer, he said.

Judge MacGrath said she would like to see Mr Clarke's condition investigated further and believed it would be a positive thing for him to attend Headways.

Judge MacGrath adjourned the case to May 11 to see if the Headways programme was still available.

She fined him €100 for threatening, abusive and insulting behaviour at Sarsfield Street, Nenagh on March 25, 2018, and €100 for the same offence at Nenagh Courthouse on May 13.