‘I hope you catch Aids’ Torrington shed dweller tells sister
A MAN who told his sister "I hope you catch Aids" and then told police he would use a chainsaw to hack off their faces and pour sulphuric acid on them, has been given a restraining order.
Darren O'Regan, 20, who lives in a garden shed at 82 Mill Street, Torrington, was ordered not to harass his sister or go to her address at Cromlech house, New Street, after he smashed a window there shortly before Christmas.
He pleaded guilty to two counts of criminal damage and breaching bail conditions when he appeared at North Devon Magistrates' Court on Monday.
The court heard how O'Regan, who has previous convictions for criminal damage, had initially been arrested on December 18.
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Sue Roberts, for the prosecution, told magistrates how O'Regan had visited his sister's home that morning and became involved in an argument with his brother.
After he left his sister was told she could be evicted if he continued to turn up at the house. And when he returned to the property that afternoon he was told as much.
O'Regan then became abusive and kicked a door before leaving and throwing a rock through a window.
A neighbour told police she had seen O'Regan throwing small stones at the window before picking up a rock which weighed around one kilogram and throwing it.
Police arrested O'Regan and released him on bail with conditions not to contact his sister or go to her home, conditions he broke on Sunday.
O'Regan went to the house, knocked on the door and then entered it without permission, Miss Roberts said.
"He was rude, abusive and threw signs about," said Miss Roberts. "His sister told him to leave and he told her 'I hope you catch Aids'."
He then left before being arrested in South Street.
O'Regan struggled when arrested and in a statement arresting officer PC Tim Cramp described him as "volatile".
"He said he hated the people of Torrington and would punch his sister in the face," the statement said.
It also included O'Regan's threat to "hack off" the officer's face.
Once in custody O'Regan, who has a history of self harming and mental health issues, was put in a "self harm suit" for his own protection, which he tore up.
He also threw food around his cell, which meant police had to clean it at a cost of £50.
Tim Hook, for the defence, said O'Regan is part of a large family and does not have any grievances against his sister.
"Both have slightly precarious accommodation," he said. "He wanted to stay at hers and found it difficult to take no for an answer.
"The things he said were perhaps not ideal when trying to cajole someone into providing accommodation."
Being arrested didn't help O'Regan's mood, Mr Hook said.
"I won't say things went from bad to worse," he said, "but being in a police cell played on his mind."
He spoke about O'Regan's "borderline" mental health issues. "From time to time they can boil over," he said. "He can over-react."
Presiding magistrate Jane Woodhams told O'Regan: "This restraining order is to protect your sister and you must not engage in conduct which amounts to harassment or go to her address.
"If you do not obey any or all of this order you could be sent to prison for up to five years."
O'Regan was also ordered to pay £50 compensation to his sister and £75 to the police.