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Mum attacked garda with hair straighteners

A MOTHER of one attacked a garda with a hair straightener, striking her over the head when the officer confronted her for urinating in the city centre.

Jackie McElhatton (36) was trying to get past the garda when she hit her with a hair straightener she was carrying.

A court heard she had the implement with her because she was homeless at the time.

McElhatton, of Wellington Square, Ballybricken, Waterford, pleaded guilty to assaulting Garda Sheila Fitzgerald in a lane off Talbot Street, Dublin 1 on January 8, 2011.

Sgt Ciaran Whelan told Dublin District Court Garda Fitzgerald was on beat duty at 6.30pm on the evening in question when she saw the accused urinating in a laneway.

She asked McElhatton to stop, at which the accused became verbally abusive.

When told she would be arrested, McElhatton tried to get past the garda.

The defendant struck the garda across the head with the hair straightener and a short struggle ensued.

McElhatton was homeless at the time and was travelling around, bringing everything with her, her lawyer said.

She had 20 previous convictions for theft, public order breaches and assault.

Judge Patricia McNamara asked if there had been any injuries or other consequences for Garda Fitzgerald as a result of the assault.

"There were no physical injuries but she was out of work for a couple of weeks," the sergeant replied.

McElhatton had consumed "quite a lot of alcohol" on the day and did not remember the incident but fully accepted what happened, her lawyer said.

She had travelled to Dublin from Maynooth and intended getting another train to Waterford, where she is now living.

The court heard the defendant had grown up in London, her parents separated and after leaving school at 16, she began living with other youths.

The accused became addicted to pills, then cocaine and later heroin, the court heard. She was now clean, had completed an adult education course and was going to Mass three times a week.

Judge McNamara adjourned the case to September 5, for a probation report.