Protection order granted against man who said he was exorcist

Woman said her ex-partner bought a ‘Mass kit’ and performed exorcism on her


A woman was given a domestic violence protection order at Arklow District Court yesterday after the judge was told her former partner said he was an exorcist and attempted to perform an exorcism on her.

The woman told Judge David Kennedy her ex-partner, with whom she had a child, had claimed he was a priest and a specialist in exorcism and he purchased a “Mass kit” containing a cross and holy water.

He would tell her a room was possessed and he’d carry out an exorcism. On one occasion she had a headache and he told her she was possessed and attempted an exorcism on her.

“He said I had a demon of some sort,” she said. “But I was just tired from my day.”

He had also taken a family Bible and claimed it caught fire while he was performing another exorcism.

The woman told the judge she believed he was saying these things to intimidate her. On another occasion he told her he was in a gang and involved in drugs. He also claimed he had a mental illness and had been in an institution.

She said that one night when she was making dinner and their baby was asleep he got a kitchen knife and threatened to slice his arms open. When she tried to take the knife he hit her in the face and knocked her to the floor.

Her relationship with the man ended earlier this year but when she sought maintenance through the courts he made threats against her and she was afraid and withdrew the summons. Her solicitor said she needed a protection order before seeking maintenance again.

Longer-term protection

The j

udge granted the protection order, which requires her ex-partner not to use violence or threaten to use violence against her. A hearing date for a safety order, which gives longer-term protection, was set for September.

One other protection order was granted at the court yesterday, and three safety orders.

In a separate case, a man said he would give up trying to get access to his daughter. His solicitor said his client felt the authorities had let him down and that his daughter was being turned against him. The man had “liberal access” to his child but that ended this year.

Giving evidence, the man said he did not attend a family event because his former partner went to a different court and took a protection order against him. He said he had to explain to his daughter why he wouldn’t attend. “She said: ‘I know, Daddy, because Mammy says she’ll have you arrested’,” the man said.

‘Messed up’

He said he believed his daughter was being “messed up” by all that had happened and the kindest thing for his child would be for him to “step back” and explain it to her when she was older.

He also said he could not afford to pay €15 a week in maintenance for her because he was unemployed and was married with other children.

The judge said he had read the social work report and it said the man’s daughter had returned from access with bruises on her arms and said her father had caused them. The judge said he did not know if that was true or if the child had been told to say it, but she had said it. He told the man his daughter was willing to see him once a week with supervision. The father refused. The judge made no access order but made an order for maintenance of €15 a week.