Public order disturbances at Mercy Hospital 'cannot go on' says judge

The judge was sentencing another man for a recent incident of being drunk and a source of danger and engaging in threatening behaviour at the hospital.
Public order disturbances at Mercy Hospital 'cannot go on' says judge

The judge was sentencing another man for a recent incident of being drunk and a source of danger and engaging in threatening behaviour at the hospital.

The senior judge of Cork District Court said of public order disturbances at Mercy University Hospital – “It just cannot go on.” 

Judge Olann Kelleher said in court that staff at the hospital were getting a terrible time from people causing drunken disturbances.

The judge was sentencing another man for a recent incident of being drunk and a source of danger and engaging in threatening behaviour at the hospital.

Inspector Ray Dunne described the incident involving 27-year-old Gareth Brown of Cork Simon Community which occurred at Grenville Place, Cork, on February 13.

“He was shouting and roaring. He was intoxicated and his speech was slurred. He was aggressive to staff in the hospital. He was hitting widows in the hospital with his legs and head.

“He was also aggressive to gardaí who arrived at the hospital. He told gardaí to f*** off,” Insp Dunne said.

As well as pleading guilty to the charges of being drunk and a danger and engaging in threatening behaviour at the hospital, Gareth Brown also pleaded guilty to stealing a bottle of Smirnoff vodka at Marks and Spencer in Merchants Quay, Cork, on January 13.

Shane Collins-Daly, solicitor, said the 27-year-old had his issues with drugs and alcohol in the past.

“In January of this year Mr Brown was the victim of quite a serious assault. As a result of that he began to drink. As he said himself he was quite messed up and his head was all over the place. He has been living with Cork Simon Community for a number of years,” Mr Collins-Daly said.

The solicitor acknowledged that cases such as this were coming before the courts on far too regular basis in relation to hospital disturbances. He said the defendant had written a letter of apology for the one in which he was involved.

The defendant came back the next day to the hospital and apologised to security staff, Mr Collins-Daly said.

Judge Kelleher said to Gareth Brown, “The hospital staff are getting a terrible time from people like you. It just cannot go on.” 

The judge imposed a two-month suspended sentence for his threatening behaviour and fined Brown €100 for being drunk and a danger and €150 for stealing the vodka in the other incident. The accused compensated the store for that theft.

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