Struck a pupil outside her school

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A 33-year-old woman who struck a pupil outside a Lurgan school was given a suspended prison sentence and ordered to pay compensation last Wednesday at Craigavon Magistrates Court.

Mary McCullough, Clonmeen, Craigavon, admitted unlawful assault on a female on September 6 last year.

She was sentenced to three months in prison, suspended for 12 months, and ordered to pay £250 compensation which will be held in trust for the child.

The court heard that police were called to St Mary’s High School in Lurgan where a pupil had been assaulted by an adult.

The victim claimed as she was leaving the school grounds she met the mother of a pupil who was a year below her.

The defendant, who was the mother, struck the injured party on the face with her hand. The victim returned to the school and reported the assault.

What happened was witnessed by a number of other pupils and adults.

When interviewed McCullough admitted being at the school and having a heated argument with the injured party.

She said she may have hit the victim in the face by accident while trying to separate her from her own daughter.

The case had been adjourned from a previous court so that a pre-sentence report could be obtained.

A solicitor for McCullough said she was ashamed of this incident.

District Judge, Mr Mervyn Bates, said the worst feature was that a child had been assaulted and assaulted in a school.

He added that it was not up to someone to take the law into their own hands.