‘Deep embrassment’ over PSNI altercation

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A 57-years-old man who became disorderly and started thumping a police Land Rover during a night out in Derry last November has been fined £150 after appearing at Derry Magistrate’s Court on Friday.

A Public Prosecution Service (PPS) solicitor told the court that Paul Armstrong, of Victoria Street, Belfast, approached the police vehicle in the early hours of November 20 last year in Derry city centre.

At approximately 2.35 a.m. in Waterloo Place Armstrong initially approached the driver’s door of the Land Rover and started banging on it, the PPS solicitor said.

Armstrong continued banging on the doors of the Land Rover before moving towards the front of the vehicle where he started interfering with its wing mirrors, the court heard. He was subsequently arrested for disorderly behaviour.

Armstrong’s defence solicitor acknowledged that his behaviour had been “extremely idiotic” for a man in his 50s and that the behaviour he displayed was more commonly associated with “drunken teenagers”.

The court heard that Armstrong had travelled to the city for a night out with his brother, who had since died, and that he had been quite intoxicated at the time of the offending. He said the incident was a source of “deep embarrassment” to Armstrong who had been mixing anti-depressants and alcohol at the time.

He asked the court to take account of Armstrong’s early guilty plea.

District Judge Barney McElholm fined Armstrong £150 and ordered him to pay an offender levy of £15.