A teenager who applied for compassionate leave from custody to visit a girl fighting for her life after falling from Belfast’s Cave Hill was “simply chancing his arm”, it has been claimed.
Peter McCormack (18) had been granted a five-hour release from Hydebank Young Offenders Centre this week after the High Court heard that Anne-Marie Curran was his girlfriend and he wanted to see her in hospital.
But the application was dropped yesterday when it was learned that the current status of their relationship was in dispute. The Public Prosecution Service returned to court after Anne-Marie’s family learned the visit was due to take place.
McCormack’s lawyers confirmed that the application was being withdrawn to ensure that the Curran family would suffer no further distress.
Yesterday Anne-Marie’s brother Kevin told the Belfast Telegraph: “It seems to us he was chancing his arm. As far as I am aware, he and Anne-Marie kept company for a while. It wasn’t that serious and it ended about six weeks ago.
“I never met him and as far as I know neither did our parents.
“But reports that the family is distressed about him making the application aren’t true. We’re not bothered one way or the other.
“We have enough to worry about and the only thing we care about is Anne-Marie’s condition and we hope that she makes a full recovery.”
McCormack, of Pinkerton Walk, Belfast, is accused of stealing 20 football shirts from a sports store.
Anne-Marie (17), from Upper Cavehill Road, suffered serious head injuries after falling 20 metres from the Napoleon’s Nose cliff face on Sunday morning while camping with friends. She was rescued in a two-hour operation involving the fire and rescue services, the ambulance and PSNI.
Her condition was described yesterday as critically ill.