Drinker abusive to nurse, gets jail

A chronic alcoholic who admitted disorderly behaviour in the local hospital had a drink before coming to court to be sentenced to ‘settle his nerves’.

Raymond Magee, of Gorteen Crescent, Limavady, pleaded guilty to a further charge of assaulting a nurse on October 27, last year.

Derry Magistrates Court heard the injured party, a staff nurse in the accident and emergency department of Altnagelvin Hospital, approached Magee because he was shouting aggressively on his phone in a corridor.

She asked him to keep the noise down and the 46-year-old came towards her and began shouting in her face.

The court was told he backed her into a corner while continuing to shout aggressively at her.

Magee was waving his arms in the air and the nurse was concerned she would be assaulted. However, the court was told she did not sustain a physical injury in the assault but was ‘shaking and upset’.

The 46-year-old was arrested in the grounds of the hospital and admitted he was frustrated because he couldn’t get a lift home. He also apologised for his behaviour.

During the court hearing, District Judge Barney McElholm asked if Magee was drunk and defence counsel Nicola Rountree said she believed her client had a drink to ‘settle his nerves’.

She said the 46-year-old is a chronic alcoholic with a lengthy criminal record. The barrister said on this night Magge was in pain and ‘over-reacted’.

Jailing Magee for a total of eight months, District Judge McElholm said the nurse felt ‘threatened and frightened’.