A man who kicked a pregnant nurse in the back and exposed his privates to her colleague in a busy A&E was jailed for four months today (Friday).
Jailing 27-year-old Christopher McDaid at Craigavon Magistrates Court, District Judge Bernie Kelly described his behaviour as “despicable and obscene.”
“To attack a woman who was eight months pregnant is obscene and made all the more obscene when you realise her role was as a medical practitioner, there to provide medical assistance to you because of the state that you voluntarily got yourself into,” the judge told McDaid, labelling his behaviour as “despicable.”
At an earlier hearing McDaid, from Dill Avenue in Lurgan and who appeared via videolink, pleaded guilty to a total of 12 charges arising from three different incidents on 14 February, 17 March and 6 April this year.
Amongst the offences are two counts of disorderly behaviour, two of resisting police, two of assaulting police, obstructing police, exposure, common assault, failing to provide a specimen of breath and two of causing criminal damage to a hospital cubicle and the ambulance triage area at Craigavon Area Hospital.
A prosecuting lawyer told the court that on 6 April, police called to a Lurgan bar and when they tried to arrest McDaid for a breach of bail, he “became aggressive” and spat at police.
On St. Valentine’s Day, said the lawyer, police received a report of a drunk driver on Charles Street in Lurgan and when they arrived at the scene, found McDaid “unsteady on his feet, shouting and swearing” with the keys to the car in his pocket.
Footage from a nearby bar showed McDaid driving the car but he refused to give a breath sample and was shouting and spitting at cops when he was arrested.
The most serious incident arose on St. Patrick’s Day when police took McDaid to Craigavon Area Hospital.
The lawyer described how a nurse who was eight months pregnant walked past McDaid to take his blood pressure when he “kicked her in the back.”
“She challenged him about his behaviour and he replied ‘I don’t give a f***’,” he told the court, adding that another nurse took McDaid to the triage area.
Once there however “he took out his penis and urinated around the room” and again when challenged by this female nurse, McDaid told her to “go f*** yourself.”
In sight of other patients, McDaid initially refused to cover himself up but eventually did so, leaving hospital staff “extremely distressed.”
The lawyer outlined how McDaid was also abusive to police, verbally abusing them, lashing out and even “spat in the mouth of an officer.”
Thankfully, neither the nurse he kicked nor her unborn baby came to any harm in the incident, the court heard.
Defence barrister David McGeown said something had happened to McDaid last year which had brought about a “sea change in his character” and lead to severe alcohol abuse but that when sober, he is a “completely different person.”
As well as the jail sentence, Judge Kelly disqualified McDaid from driving for 15 months and fined him £150.
She told McDaid that had she been allowed to, “I would’ve imposed a three year restraining order barring you from going anywhere near Craigavon Area Hospital.”
“You have a hospital right on your doorstep, a large amount of people in Northern Ireland don’t have that....if you had to travel to Belfast or Antrim for treatment you may realise the luxury you have to have a hospital on your doorstep,” declared the judge.