Sentencing adjourned for man who ‘lost the plot’

A hospital patient who videoed a nurse and threatened to follow her home had sentencing in his case adjourned for a fortnight yesterday.

Evidence was also given of the accused man “losing the plot”, assaulting security staff by spraying a fire extinguisher at them and pulling a tube from his arm and threatening other nurses with blood.

Liam McGowan, of 138 Meadowbrook, Craigavon, Co Armagh, faced sentencing yesterday at Cork District Court.

Judge Olann Kelleher had expressed concern that the accused had not been doing enough to address his alcohol problem and put sentencing back yesterday for him to take steps in this regard.

Defence solicitor, Donal Daly, said yesterday that the accused had been in an alcohol treatment programme for the past fortnight. In those circumstances, Judge Kelleher put sentencing back for a further fortnight to allow this to continue.

Inspector John Deasy said that apart from alcohol one of the contributing factors for the accused man “losing the plot” on the night was alleged to have been the fact that he had been submerged upside down under water earlier that day as part of a training exercise for working on an oil rig.

Donal Daly, defence solicitor, said it was a highly unusual case where the defendant had no previous convictions and was clearly not himself on the occasion.

A fire extinguisher was sprayed at three security men during a scene of violence and mayhem at Cork University Hospital.

McGowan pleaded guilty at Cork District Court to charges of assault causing harm to three security men at the emergency department of CUH on November 5, 2017.

He also admitted causing criminal damage at the emergency unit where he smashed a glass panel in a door and set off a fire extinguisher which he then sprayed into the faces of three security officers who were trying to restore order and protect patients.

Injuries sustained by the three security men included damage to their eyes as a result of being sprayed into the face with a fire extinguisher. They were also close to the scene when McGowan smashed the glass panel.

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