An argument that started when a boy kicked a ball into the back of a truck spiralled out of control on Sunday and ended up with a man allegedly brandishing a gun and the child's mother needing stitches.
The incident took place on Sunday outside Ħamrun football nursery ground at around 12.30pm.
A court heard that it began when a 10-year-old boy climbed into an open truck to retrieve a football.
He was told off by a woman, 35-year-old Chantelle Casha, whose father owned the truck.
When the boy’s mother came to see what the commotion was about, Casha allegedly told her “you have an arrogant child.”
The argument escalated and Casha's father, David Micallef, 59, stepped into the fray. The incident then allegedly snowballed, as others joined in.
In the ensuing commotion, the child’s mother ended up with a deep cut on her eyebrow that needed suturing.
At one point, Micallef allegedly went into his home on the same street and emerged on the balcony, brandishing a firearm, warning those brawling below that he would empty the gun on them.
Micallef and his daughter Chantelle Casha, were both arrested and arraigned on Tuesday. They were charged with insulting and threatening the victim, assaulting her as well as causing her grievous injuries. Micallef was separately charged with causing others fear of violence, carrying a weapon while committing a crime against the person and failing to abide by his licence conditions.
The court was told that after the incident, police had searched Micallef’s residence and found seven registered firearms which were all seized.
Prosecuting inspector Sarah Kathleen Zerafa said the injured woman told officers that both father and daughter had hit her.
She did not know who had caused the deep cut on her eyebrow but reasoned that it could only have been inflicted by a man, the victim had claimed.
The whole episode had been caught on CCTV footage from the street.
Both co-accused pleaded not guilty.
Magistrate Joseph Mifsud upheld a request for bail against a deposit of €500 and a personal guarantee of €4,500 each.
Casha, who has a secretarial job at a law firm, was ordered to sign the bail book once weekly and to abide by a curfew between 10pm and 6am.
Her father, unemployed, was ordered to sign the bail book twice weekly and under a curfew between 10pm and 8am.
“I don’t want cowboys and Indians on our streets,” said the magistrate.
“We should introduce a subject on how to respect each other… we need to nurture a sense of tolerance among us… And disciplining our children is important. We must not give in to all that our children claim and wage war.
“All authorities deserve respect- teachers, doctors, nurses, Transport Malta officials, wardens, police!”
Lawyers Roberto Spiteri and Anthony Farrugia were counsel to Casha. Lawyer Axl Camilleri was counsel to Micallef. AG lawyers Joseph Camilleri Azarov and Jurgen Dalli also prosecuted.
Correction November 7, 2023: A previous version incorrectly stated that Casha is the boy's mother. She is the co-accused.