Bail refused for man accused of having hatchet as an offensive weapon

A man accused of stealing a one-metre-long hatchet from his grandfather’s shed, allegedly smashed his way in to his aunt’s home in Randalstown.

Thursday, 26th August 2021, 4:44 pm
Stock photo

Details emerged at Antrim Magistrates Court, sitting in Ballymena, during a bail application on behalf of Tony McNally.

The 23-year-old, with an address listed as Curran Road in Larne, is charged in relation to July 4 this year.

He appeared via video link from prison.

A prosecutor said charges of aggravated burglary and theft of a hatchet were being withdrawn.

The defendant is charged with possessing a hatchet as an offensive weapon, assaulting his aunt, and causing criminal damage to his grandfather’s gate and to his aunt’s back door and windows.

Objecting to bail, a police officer said McNally’s grandfather told police the defendant had broken the gate of his property in an effort to gain entry at Grant Avenue in Randalstown and had then taken a hatchet from a shed.

Police were called to a disturbance at Drummaul Park in Randalstown.

A woman said her nephew had a hatchet and was trying to gain entry to her home.

Police arrived around 8.30am and officers were told the defendant was in the house after smashing three rear windows and a door panel using the hatchet.

The defendant exited and was arrested and “appeared to be under the influence of an unknown drug”.

McNally had dried blood on his hand and a blue-handled hatchet - approximately one metre in length - was located in a garden.

Defence barrister Neil Moore said there were concerns about the defendant’s “ongoing mental health difficulties”.

Deputy District Judge Trevor Browne said he was concerned about a “risk of repetition” and he refused bail.

The case was adjourned to August 31.