A 50-year-old Enniskillen man was convicted of assaulting his 75-year-old mother at Fermanagh Magistrates Court this week.

Passing judgement on Phillip Keenan, of no fixed abode Enniskillen, District Judge Michael Ranaghan said that the assault was “nasty, disgusting and cowardly”.

He sentenced the defendant to five months in prison.

Keenan pleaded guilty to two counts of assault and one of criminal damage as the court heard the details of the attack which took place on August 24 this year.

The court heard that due to previous incidents the defendant’s mother had been “advised by Women’s Aid to change the lock on her property”.

Keenan was accused of barging into the property and following his mother to her bedroom where he is said to have “grabbed her by the arm and twisted her fingers”.

It was revealed that Keenan returned to the property later that night and told his mother that he would break the lock of the door if he did not get a key to the house with the prosecution revealing that the lock was damaged as a result of the defendant’s actions.

When he got into the house for a second time that day, the court was told that he again followed his mother into the bedroom and threw a glass of water over her.

Police were called to the residence and when they arrived they reported that the injured party was “frail and frightened” and that she “whispered to police that she did not want her son in the house”.

The defendant when questioned by police said that he had “no-where else to go”.

A defending solicitor told the court that it was accepted that it was “an extremely unsavoury incident and cruel behaviour” towards the injured party.

The solicitor revealed that Keenan had been living with his mother for some time following his return to Enniskillen from England and had requested a property from the Housing Executive, but because he had no dependents he was “somewhat down the list”.

The defence pointed out that the defendant had been deemed suitable for bail following his arrest but that he had no suitable bail address. The court was also told that there was “extreme remorse and regret” on behalf of the defendant.

The court heard that Keenan had one previous conviction which occurred the previous year and defence asked for consideration to be taken on the fact that he had entered a plea of guilty at the earliest possible time, and as such had “avoided any further stress being caused to his mother.