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Man Allegedly Assaults Woman in Belfast Over Dog Welfare Concerns

by Lisa

A man currently banned from keeping animals is facing charges of common assault and breaching a disqualification order after allegedly grabbing a woman by the hair during a confrontation about a dog‘s welfare in Belfast.

Wayne Kirkwood, 30, residing in Lewis Mews in the east of the city, was arrested following a disturbance in the Rosemary Street area on Sunday. In addition to the assault and breach of disqualification charges, he is also accused of possessing Class C drugs, namely pregabalin and diazepam.

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According to Belfast Magistrates’ Court, Kirkwood, still under a 10-year banning order from a 2014 animal cruelty case, was involved in a heated exchange when the woman confronted him about the dog’s wellbeing. A PSNI officer reported that Kirkwood allegedly squared up to the woman, shouted, swore, and pulled her ponytail.

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When approached by the police, Kirkwood, appearing to be under the influence of substances, was found in possession of tablets. He denied the assault, claiming he was returning pills left at his home to their rightful owner.

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Opposing bail, the officer highlighted Kirkwood’s existing banning order and emphasized that the altercation originated from concerns about the welfare of the dog in his possession.

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Defense counsel Danielle McMahon argued that the disqualification is set to expire later this month, and Kirkwood should be released to support his parents. She stated that the accused denies the charges and has provided an account of who the drugs belonged to.

However, District Judge Steven Keown refused bail, citing the risk of re-offending. Kirkwood has been remanded in custody until March 25.

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