Jail term after menacing message was attached to brick lobbed into house in 'mistaken identity' incident

Jail term after menacing message was attached to brick lobbed into house in 'mistaken identity' incident

A COURT heard a kitchen window in Bangor was smashed in a 'mistaken identity' incident by a brick with a note wrapped around it saying 'This is what happens to scammers. Next time it won't be a brick'.

Anton McCann (20), with an address listed as Old Suffolk Road in Belfast, pleaded guilty to causing criminal damage in March this year.

A prosecutor told Newtownards Magistrates' Court (main picture) a woman was sitting in her living room when a brick "came through her kitchen window".

He added: "The brick was wrapped in a letter which was cellotaped to it. The letter said: 'This is what happens to scammers. Next time it won't be a brick'."

The prosecutor said the woman had lived there for decades and the householder suspected it was a "case of mistaken identity".

The court heard family members arrived to "comfort" the woman.

The prosecutor said the woman's grandson also lived there and he said he had "no idea" why it happened.

The note was sent for forensic and fingerprint analysis and the defendant was identified.

The defendant appeared via video link from his solicitor's office.

A defence lawyer said McCann, who has ADHD, had a previous record which arose from "misuse of substances and being party to a negative peer group".

District Judge Mark Hamill noted the defendant had not disclosed "any motivation" for the incident.

He added: "The shock of a pensioner sitting in her house and a brick comes flying through a window with a menacing note."

The judge said if the defendant had not brought £200 compensation for the victim he would have jailed him for eight months.

McCann was given a four months jail sentence.

Judge Hamill said if the defendant appealed the sentence a County Court judge would ask: "What was your motivation for this?"

The defendant was released pending appeal.