Homeless man jailed for Aids bite threat to garda

An alcoholic homeless man who threatened a garda that he had Aids and would bite him was sentenced to a total of five months in jail for the serious nature of the abuse.

Gerry McDonagh (41 ) with an address given as Fairgreen Hostel appeared before Judge Mary Fahy at Monday’s sitting of Galway District Court where he pleaded guilty to a plethora of public order charges.

Inspector Ernie White told the court that on March 4, 2010, at 4.30pm the defendant was found lying face down on a grass verge near the canal at Dominick Street. There were fears for his safety and so Garda Ciara Carey attempted to wake him up. However, McDonagh woke and told Garda Carey: “I’m going to bite you because I have Aids”.

The inspector then went on to to say that on February 19 last at 12pm gardai were called to Merchant’s Road where there were complaints of an abusive man who had put his hand through an office window, causing €200 worth of damage. McDonagh also pleaded guilty to being intoxicated in a public place in Eyre Square on February 11 and at Shop Street on January 21, to being intoxicated and threatening and abusive behaviour at Eyre Square on January 18, and to three counts of failing to appear in court.

“He was so drunk he fell against it and broke it,” said defence solicitor Valerie Corcoran referring to the criminal damage charge.

Ms Corcoran then said that her client has a lot of difficulties with alcohol and has been “in and out” of hospital for blood transfusions. She said that during the day when McDonagh is not in hospital there is a tendency for him to drink but there “is no element of violence”.

“He is not criminally minded, he is just unfortunate,” said Ms Corcoran.

“I’m a bit surprised by what he said to the garda. It’s more than just ordinary abuse. It’s not a very nice thing to say to anyone, particularly a young female garda,” said Judge Fahy, who then imposed a total of five months in jail and fined him €400.

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