Racially abused girls for not wearing masks
A man said by his lawyer to be “fixated by Covid” racially abused two girls after challenging them for not wearing masks, a court heard.
Fifty-two-year-old Malachy Patrick McIlvanna from Springdale, Dungannon, was given a two-month jail sentence, suspended for 12 months for disorderly behaviour.
East Tyrone Magistrates Court, sitting in Dungannon, on Friday was told the incident happened at a store in Scotch Street Market Yard in the town on January 28.
A PPS lawyer said it was reported by one of the injured parties who was over 18 years that she and her 14-year-old cousin had been spoken to by a male in the store.
She said they had been very scared when he called them “black c****” and “f****** black b*******” , repeatedly.
McIlvanna was later cautioned by police and he told them he had been very offended by the attitude of the girls when he challenged them about not wearing masks, counsel added.
Defence lawyer Craig Patton described the defendant’s comments as deplorable and racist.
Mr Patton explained McIlvanna has emotional mental health problems and had become fixated with Covid.
He said the defendant was extremely disturbed at the attitude of the two girls.
The lawyer said in his favour the defendant has a limited criminal record.
Deputy District Judge Sean O’Hare told McIlvanna, who appeared by video link from his solicitor’s office, that he had shown a disgraceful lack of respect and had used racist and abusive language to a child.
Mr O’Hare added while the defendant has no relevant record, the case was aggravated by hostility.
Thank you for reading this article. We’re more reliant on your support than ever as the shift in consumer habits brought about by Coronavirus impacts our advertisers.
Please consider purchasing a copy of the paper. You can also support trusted, fact-checked journalism by taking out a digital subscription of the News Letter.