A judge has said that the criminal justice system was ‘not set up’ to deal with people with ‘entrenched’ mental health issues.
District Judge Barney McElholm made the comment as 20-years-old Kieran Masterton appeared at the local magistrate’s court.
Masterton, whose address was given on court papers as no fixed abode, pleaded guilty to assaulting his mother on May 19.
A defence solicitor said there would be no application for bail.
He added that Masterton has mental health issues and asked for an assessment to be carried out when he arrives in custody.
Judge McElholm agreed, stating: “I am aware of this young man and his mental health difficulties. Quite frankly it is just another example of the appalling state of mental health services in this jurisdicition’.
The judge said the defendant “needs institutionalised help, instead what happens is that he doesn’t get the help. If he is brought into a mental institution he is usually relased within a week with no adequate work done or treatment provided and the cycle just continues.”
Judge McElholm added that the “criminal justice system was not set up to deal with people with mental health issues as entrenched as this young man’s.”
Remanding Masterton in custody, the judge asked for an assessment to be carried out on the defendant.
Masterson will appear back in court again later this week.