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Man who spat at mother over Christmas holidays handed suspended sentence

Defence told court: 'They have a love-hate relationship...They fall in, they fall out and then the police are called'

Craigavon-Courthouse

A Portadown man who put his arm around his mother’s head and then spat at her on Boxing Day has been handed a suspended prison sentence.

The 22-year-old’s solicitor told court: “They have a love-hate relationship. His mother is an alcoholic and the defendant has his own issues with addiction. They fall in, they fall out and then the police are called.”

Malachy McCann, of Churchill Park, pleaded guilty to common assault at Craigavon Magistrates’ on Friday, via videolink from Maghaberry.

Prosecution outlined that on December 26, police received a report of an alleged assault from the defendant’s mother.

Officers spoke to McCann’s mother, and she stated that her son had put his arm around her head and had spat at her.

Police located the defendant upstairs in the property, attempting to get out of a second storey window.

McCann was arrested and, during interview, he claimed nothing had happened and that not even a verbal altercation had occurred.

Defence solicitor John McAtamney informed court that the only entry on McCann’s record which related to his mother was a breach of the peace charge from last year.

He stated: “They have a love-hate relationship. His mother is an alcoholic and the defendant has his own issues with addiction. They fall in, they fall out and then the police are called.”

Mr McAtamney explained that McCann had gone to his mother’s house over the Christmas period and with drink taken things “deteriorated”.

Deputy District Judge Chris Holmes commented: “He has an unusual record, it is not long, it starts in 2017 with a conditional discharge, then a fine, which is fair enough, but the rest is custody.”

McCann was sentenced to two months in prison suspended for two years.

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