Man jailed for hospital disorderly

A man who was abusive and threatening to hospital staff and police has been jailed for three months.

Martin John Craig, with an address of McCorley Road, Toomebridge, pleaded guilty to disorderly behaviour at Altnagelvin Hospital on April 5.

Derry Magistrates Court heard police were called to the hospital because the 41-year-old was being “abusive and threatening” to staff in the accident and emergency department.

When officers arrived they found Craig “slumped in a wheelchair” at the entrance to the hospital. He was “extremely” drunk and became verbally abusive and threatening to the officers.

The court heard he attempted to strike the officers and lashed out at them with his fists.

Craig was warned about his behaviour five times and was arrested when he refused to calm down.

A defence solicitor told the court his client is a “chronic alcoholic” who attended court with two charity workers helping him with his addiction.

He said Craig has no recollection of the incident and is “deeply ashamed” of his behaviour.

District Judge Barney McElholm agreed to adjourn sentencing for a probation pre-sentence report as the starting point for disorderly behaviour in the hospital is a custodial sentence.

However, Craig then asked : “For what, for nothing. The police beat me up and stole all my money.”

Mr McElholm said he believed he would be wasting his time getting a pre-sentence report and jailed the 41-year-old for three months.