Rioter cried when arrested

Derry's Courthouse on Bishop Street. 3003JM66
Derry's Courthouse on Bishop Street. 3003JM66

A 20-year-old man who attacked police was caught when he ran into a fence and fell, a court was told.

Conor McToal, of Whitethorn Avenue, Ardmore, pleaded guilty to riotous behaviour on July 6, 2013.

Derry Magistrates Court heard that police were dealing with a domestic incident on Tullymore Road when they came under attack from three young people wearing hoodies with their faces covered.

McToal and two others began throwing stones and missiles at police. They also shouted and made offensive gestures to officers.

Police charged at them to chase them away. However McToal, who was drunk at the time, ran straight into a fence and fell.

When he was arrested McToal was ‘crying and pleading with police for forgiveness’ and was extremely remorseful for his behaviour.

It was revealed to the court the 20-year-old has a criminal record and was in breach of a suspended sentence.

Defence solicitor Maeliosa Barr said that McToal continues to be remorseful.

He added McToal, who lives with his mother, is a ‘vulnerable young man’ and that on the night in question he had had a ‘lot of drink’.

District Judge Barney McElholm said: “The big problem is that there was a suspended sentence in May 2013 and this offence was committed just less than a month later. He better take this as his absolute final chance; if Mr McToal comes back in with anything similar at all, he will go straight to prison.” McToal was sentenced to 200 hours community service.