A WOMAN who went berserk in a garda station, pulling one woman officer's hair and spitting on and slapping others, has been ordered to carry out community service to avoid a jail sentence.
Tina Dunne (38) dragged the female garda to the ground by the hair in a series of assaults after she flew into a rage over an investigation into the theft of her purse.
Dunne felt aggrieved at her arrest following a row she had with the woman she believed had taken the purse.
Judge Catherine Murphy told her to undertake 240 hours of community service after hearing the defendant had no previous assault convictions and had not been in trouble since the incident two years ago.
The accused, of St Dominic's Terrace, Tallaght, pleaded guilty to assaulting the three gardai at Clondalkin Garda Station on September 15, 2008.
Sgt Grainne McDonnell told Dublin District Court the accused arrived at the station and was being taken to the cell area when she slapped one woman garda across the face.
The garda stood back with the force of the slap. Dunne then grabbed hold of the second garda by the hair and pulled her head to the ground.
The defendant kicked and swung out at gardai and continued to shout at them. She spat twice at them.
Sgt McDonnell said she believed the defendant had taken some alcohol, but not a considerable amount.
The court heard the defendant had 12 previous convictions, for public order and motoring offences. She had not come to the attention of the gardai since the 2008 incident.
Dunne accepted that it was very serious to commit acts of violence against the gardai and realised she was "in the gravest of positions", her lawyer said.
Judge Murphy said she was taking into account the fact that the defendant had not been in trouble since the assaults.