Woman smashed her sister’s window

A 24 year-old woman who broke her sister’s window in Rathfriland last summer, appeared before the local court last week.

Michelle Louise Theresa Finnegan pleaded guilty to two counts of criminal damage and a charge of theft.

She appeared on the court list with three different addresses, one listed as Lissize Avenue, Rathfriland.

Finnegan, who had been in custody for eight days before Thursday’s court appearance, was sentenced to four months in prison suspended for two years in relation to the theft charge, and conditionally discharged for 12 months in relation to the criminal damage.

She was also ordered to compensation totalling £134.40

A PPS prosecutor explained how on 11 July last, a resident at Lissize Avenue, reported that her window had been smashed by Finnegan, her sister.

She was intoxicated at the time and the witness told police that the pair didn’t get on and she was afraid Finnegan might come back.

When police found and cautioned her, a heavily intoxicated Finnegan said, “You may f***ing ring her and get her to drop the f***ing charges.”

She made a statement saying she didn’t know where her sister lived and that she had been drinking in a field in Rathfriland at the time with her brother.

Later that month, police were again called back to Lissize Avenue when the same injured party reported that her windscreen wiper had been pulled off her car.Finnegan was located in Newry Street, again in a highly intoxicated state. She could not stand up and was unable to be interviewed until the following day.

The third charge, explained the prosecutor, came after a female reported that her handbag had been stolen by Finnegan.

The woman claimed she and Finnegan had attended a hair salon as friends and she asked Finnegan to mind her bag which was then stolen.

The bag was valued at £30, contained £40 cash and contained new cosmetics valued at £25.

Finnegan was interviewed and said someone else must have taken the handbag.

Barrister Mr O’Hare said relations between Finnegan and her sister were improved and there have been no problems since.

He said his client suffered from a number of mental health issues and struggled with alcohol addiction.

However he stressed she was keen to engage with her GP and the community addictions team.

District Judge Mr Paul Copeland warned Finnegan that if she didn’t pay the compensation within 28 days then she would face seven days in jail.