A Cookstown teenager who was told by a District Judge that he was “drinking his way to prison” has been given a suspended sentence for disorderly behaviour.
Brendan McGurk, 19, of Tamnaskeeny Road, was charged with disorderly behaviour following an incident outside Time Bar, James Street, Cookstown on August 2, last year.
A court heard how police on patrol on the night in question observed two males, one of whom was the defendant having a heated discussion but at the same time were shaking hands.
The two males began shouting at one another in a loud manner and using foul language. Police told the defendant to calm down, warned him about his behaviour and asked him to refrain from shouting abusively.
Police then observed the defendant step back and punch the other male in the face, causing him to fall back and onto a parked car.
McGurk was then taken by police to the other side of the road where he was arrested for disorderly behaviour.
When placed in the police car McGurk was continually abusive to police and continued to shout “Up the Ra” in a loud manner to police as if to provoke a reaction.
A defence solicitor for McGurk told the court his client despite the incident did ultimately calm down and co-operate with police. He also said he appreciated that his client did have a lengthy youth record.
District Judge John Meehan, before passing sentence made reference to the fact that it was McGurk’s sixth appearance in court inside a couple of years.
Judge Meehan said: “Your record is striking...you just like getting drunk and doing damage...you are drinking your way to prison.”
Judge Meehan added that “clearly only prison is left” before sentencing Mr McGurk to two months detention in a young offenders centre, before suspending the sentence for two years.
Mr McGurk was also fined £150 for the offence and ordered to also pay a further £15 offender levy to the court.