At last we have some news about David McConaghie, the creationist preacher and Northern Ireland political operative who was arrested in connection with the discovery of a hidden camera found in the loo of Democratic Unionist Party member David Simpson’s constituency office. The trial has been delayed twice before.
We’ve been eagerly following this case because we think it provides a unique insight into the minds of creationists, illustrating the connection between moral depravity and the intellectual aberration of creationism. Our last post about it was David McConaghie Update — 11 March 2015. At that time McConaghie was out on bail and the trial was supposed to start in two weeks. But there’s been no news since then — until now.
BBC reports Former DUP adviser David McConaghie denies voyeurism. Here are some excerpts, with bold font added by us:
A former church minister and adviser to DUP MP David Simpson allegedly secretly filmed female colleagues using the toilet in the constituency office, a court has heard. David McConaghie, from Cottage Hill, Dollingstown, denies making recordings for his sexual gratification. He appeared before Craigavon Magistrates Court on Monday.
Presumably that means today. Then they tell us:
A woman who worked with him said she had been uneasy about him for some time leading up to September 2012. She told the court he had begun to hang his coat in the ladies’ toilet with his camera phone poking out of the breast pocket. She challenged him and the coat was removed.
Is that suspicious behavior? We don’t know the social customs in Northern Ireland. Maybe it’s not uncommon for gents to hang their coats in the ladies’ room. Let’s read on:
However, she said that a short time later, he suggested buying potpourri for the toilet and provided two filled boxes.
We don’t know what that means, but let’s keep going:
She said she continually pushed one of the boxes into a corner, only to repeatedly find it pushed back to a position nearer the toilet. Eventually, she looked among the potpourri and found a small camera, she said.
Egad! The BBC story continues:
When she examined some of the footage from this, she saw images of herself using the bathroom and shots of Mr McConaghie in which she said he appeared to be setting up the camera. She told David Simpson, MP, who called the police. He also gave evidence on Monday.
Things don’t look good for McConaghie. But we haven’t heard his side of the case. Here’s the last of the news story:
Mr McConaghie’s defence will be heard at the end of July.
This thing is taking forever! But at least it has begun. Until we know the conclusion of this judicial adventure, all we can do is repeat our usual advice: Avoid using the bathrooms in any creationist location — that includes creationist politicians, creationist “think tanks,” creation museums and theme parks, and the church buildings of creationist denominations.
Addendum: The Belfast Telegraph, which has the largest circulation of any newspaper in Northern Ireland, has this headline: Ex-DUP aide David McConaghie denies ‘toilet cam’ voyeurism charge. Their story has more details of the testimony. Here are a couple of excerpts about the “potpourri” — whatever that is:
[T]he woman said McConaghie had suggested some potpourri for the toilet and one Monday morning he arrived with some in a square pot which was placed in the toilet. Later another pot arrived and was also put in the toilet. One pot was round and the other square but both had holes in their sides. The second pot was placed six inches from the corner directly facing the toilet. The other one was behind the door but when the door was closed the pot also faced the toilet.
At lunch time on September 12, 2012, she asked her co-worker if she had been moving the pot but she said no, adding that she then told her what she had been doing for a number of weeks. The witness added that they agreed to bring some potpourri back to the office, empty the pots and replace what was in them. She said they went back to work and brought the pots down to the main office. When they were emptying the pots a device fell out. When she pushed a button a red light was illuminated. She explained that they re-filled the pots and brought them back up to the toilet passing the defendant’s office. He was on the phone and then said ‘I have to go’.
That’s enough. You can read the rest for yourselves.
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