Teenager kicked his girlfriend while she was lying on ground

Court image
Court image

A teenager has appeared before Londonderry Magistrates Court, accused of causing grievous bodily harm to his girlfriend.

The 17-year-old, who cannot be named because of his age, is also charged with two counts of common assault.

The offences were alleged to have been committed between April 6 and May 19.

The Magistrates Court heard the complainant sustained a fractured wrist and broken fingers as a result of the alleged incident.

It is alleged the teenager assaulted his girlfriend, a 21-year-old woman, as they walked along Clooney Road.

The 17-year-old is also accused of kicking out at the woman, causing her to fall. It was alleged that the women put her hand out to break the fall and sustained the injuries.

The court also heard claims that when the woman tried to get back up the teen kicked her again.

The teenager was arrested later that night at the woman’s home. She reported that the 17-year-old arrived at her address with his mother and both of them assaulted her.

The Magistrates Court was told that his mother was also arrested and is due to appear in court again next month.

The complainant made a further report that her boyfriend had assaulted her six weeks ago by pushing her down stairs in her house.

During interview, conducted by the police, the 17-year-old denied the assaults.

Instead, he claimed he had had an argument with his girlfriend as they walked along the Clooney Road and they ended their seven-month relationship.

Police opposed bail.

An investigating officer said the alleged victim was extremely vulnerable and feared repercussions from the defendant’s family.

The officer said the defendant has 12 previous convictions, four of which are in connection with assaults.

The PSNI officer said the convictions against the 17-year-old showed what she called “a propensity for violence” and said police feared the teenager would commit further offences.

She said that the police also feared he would interfere with the complainant.

Defence solicitor Seamus Quigley said the defendant denied the offences.

He said his client lived more than five miles away from the complainant and had no interest in rekindling their relationship.

Hearing the outline of the case, District Judge Peter King said there were very limited circumstances where a court could refuse bail to a young person.

If the defendant was an adult he said he would have no hesitation remanding him in custody but his hands were tied due to his age and he released him bail with a condition not to contact the alleged injured party. He will appear in court again on June 2.