‘Aggressive, menacing’ man in Accident & Emergency

A man who was ‘aggressive and menacing’ in the Accident & Emergency Department of Altnagelvin Hospital has been ordered to complete 175 hours of Community Service.

Tuesday, 22nd January 2019, 1:00 pm
Updated Thursday, 7th February 2019, 6:20 pm

Joseph McLaughlin, of Glenbank Road, admitted the disorderly behaviour on July 29 last year.

The local magistrate’s court was told the 41-years-old defendant was observed shouting and swearing and making obscene comments to staff.

He also directed comments towards members of the public who were present in the waiting area at the time.

Defence solicitor, Paddy MacDermott, said his client is ‘deeply embarrassed’ by his ‘shameful behaviour’.

He said McLaughlin had gone to the hospital receiving news that his friend had died.

The solicitor told the court that his client wanted to speak to the family and felt he was not being treated properly.

Mr MacDermott added that the incident was of a ‘short duration’.

District Judge Paul Copeland told the court this form of behaviour in a hospital was intolerable.

He said that someone like McLaughlin being ‘aggressive and menacing’ was ‘absolutely appalling.’

The judge added: “The courts have repeatedly said in these cases an immediate custodial sentence is appropriate.”

However, he said in this case he would allow McLaughlin to give something back to the community.