Man is cleared of threat to kill doctor

Bishop street Courthouse
Bishop street Courthouse

A man charged with the assault of two nurses at Altnagelvin Hospital was cleared of a third charge of making a threat to kill a doctor at Londonderry Magistrates Court.

Paul Gerald Martin Cullen, of Drumleck Gardens, pleaded guilty to two charges of common assault and disorderly behaviour arising out of an incident at Altnagelvin Hospital on November 8, last year. However, he denied a further charge of making a threat to kill a doctor.

District Judge Barney McElholm was told that Cullen had vomited and urinated on himself in the hospital, and at one stage fell on the ground.

A nurse treating him believed he had broken his nose as a result of the fall.

Defence counsel Stephen Chapman said his client was in such an intoxicated state that he may not have been capable to form the intent required to make a threat to kill.

He said it was clear from the evidence the doctor did not believe the threat was real. However, the prosection argued that drunken intent is still intent. She said it was a “sustained incident” and argued that Cullen engaged in “threatening behaviour for a number of hours”.

On hearing the case, District Judge McElholm said the question for the court was whether there was any intent at all or if Cullen was “just spewing bile at all those helping him”.

He said he was not satisfied there was any clear intent in the threat and dismissed that charge.

Sentencing was adjourned for a probation report in respect of the assaults and disorderly behaviour and Cullen was ordered to appear in court again on March 27.