Courts

Wednesday 23 July 2014

Hepatitis C sufferer bit garda while being arrested for assault on security guard, court heard

Published 10/07/2014|16:19

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Judge Mary Ellen Ring
Judge Mary Ellen Ring suspended one year of two and half year sentence

A Hepatitis C sufferer has been jailed after she bit the hand of a garda during her arrest for another assault on a security guard.

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Carol Rooney (28) received a sentence of two and a half years with one year suspended. It was backdated to January 1 last. She will serve the sentence alongside a 20 month sentence she is already serving.

Rooney of Orchid House, James Street pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court  to two counts of assault causing harm at Marks and Spencers shop, Liffey Street, Dublin on June 12, 2013.

Judge Mary Ellen Ring suspended 12 months of the sentence after hearing evidence that she has taken steps to deal with her drug addiction issues.

Rooney has 107 previous convictions including 45 for theft, two for drug dealing and one for possession of a knife.

Sergeant Mark O’Doherty told Fiona McGowan BL, prosecuting, that Jennifer Breslin was working as a security guard at the Jervis Shopping Centre when she saw a commotion inside the shop.

Sgt O’Doherty said around five other security guards had surrounded Rooney because she had been caught shop lifting. Rooney was lashing and kicking out and Ms Breslin went over to help her colleagues.

Rooney then hit the victim in the back of her head with an aerosol can she had hidden up her sleeve. 

The victim’s head was bleeding and she was taken to hospital where she received three stitches to her head and a tetanus injection.

Another garda arrived to arrest Rooney and noticed she was inhaling from the can of aerosol. As he went to take it from her she put her head down to his hand and bit him, drawing blood.

A blood test on Rooney revealed she has Hepatitis C and the court heard the garda had to go for treatment to the Infectious Diseases Clinic in Dublin’s Mater Hospital.

Rooney pleaded guilty at Dublin District Court last February 10 to theft of a bottle of wine. This meant a number of district court suspended sentences were activated and she was jailed for two months.

Pieter Le Vert BL, defending, said his client wished to apologise deeply for her actions. He said she was extremely intoxicated at the time and was appalled and upset when she later viewed the CCTV footage of her behaviour.

Sgt O’Doherty agreed with a submission that Rooney’s physical appearance has improved dramatically since the offences.

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