Man to be sentenced after telling mother 'I will kill you' in text message

The accused, who lives with his father, used to send his mother messages asking if she loved him before the messages turned sour

A 22-year-old man has pleaded guilty to having caused his mother to fear that violence would be used against her when he sent her a text message that said “I will kill you,” earlier this month.

The man, whose name cannot be published by court order, was charged with causing his mother to fear that violence would be used against her or her property, and with threatening her. He was also accused of misusing electronic telecommunications equipment.

At the beginning of the sitting, before magistrate Joe Mifsud, lawyer Jason Azzopardi, assisting the accused, informed the court that his client wanted to admit to the charges.

Azzopardi explained that the defendant, who works with his father as a deliveryman, had been messaging his mother “to ask her whether she still loved him.” 

The man’s parents had separated many years ago and he resided with his father, the lawyer told the court. “He would send messages asking her ‘Do you love me?’, ‘Do you still love me?’ and she ignored his messages,” Azzopardi said.

He had subsequently sent his mother a message saying “I will kill you,” in what his lawyer said was a “desperate bid to get her attention after being ignored.” The woman had reported the message to the police, which led to the man’s arraignment today.

The man admitted the charges, confirming the guilty plea when given the opportunity to reconsider.

Azzopardi requested bail, pointing to the man’s father and other family members who were present in the courtroom.

Magistrate Joe Mifsud ordered a pre-sentencing report be drawn up. The magistrate admonished the defendant, telling him that “this is not how things are done.”

The court granted the man bail, pending the completion of the pre-sentencing report, secured by a €200 deposit and a €3,800 personal guarantee. The man was also placed under a curfew and ordered to sign a bail book once a week.

A protection order in favour of the victim was also issued.

Inspector Audrey Micallef led the prosecution.