Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 24 April 2014

Dad rescued teenage daughters from Ardoyne riot... then joined in

Loyalists confronted police in North Belfast on the Twelfth of July, following the decision to bar Orangemen from walking through Ardoyne
Loyalists confronted police in North Belfast on the Twelfth of July, following the decision to bar Orangemen from walking through Ardoyne

A father who threw masonry at police after going to rescue his teenage daughters from rioting in north Belfast was spared jail today.

Jason McCormick's three-month prison sentence was suspended due to exceptional medical circumstances.

The 39-year-old, from the Crumlin Road in the city, admitted a charge of riotous behaviour on July 13 last year.

Sustained disorder had broken out over the ban on Orangemen parading back past the nationalist Ardoyne area.

Belfast Magistrates' Court heard McCormick was seen approaching police lines on the Woodvale Road armed with bottles.

He then threw a chunk of masonry at officers, according to the prosecution.

A defence lawyer said McCormick's partner had phoned and asked him to get their two daughters away from the area of the rioting.

The defendant set out and eventually found them, the court heard.

However, it was accepted that he also hurled a plastic bottle and small brick at police.

"He cannot give an explanation. It was sheer stupidity," his lawyer said.

Undisclosed medical issues were raised as part of her submissions.

Noting that McCormick was recently given a suspended sentence over a separate rioting case, District Judge Fiona Bagnall decided it would be wrong to be inconsistent.

She said: "There will be three months (prison), suspended for 18 months, on the basis of exceptionality." ends

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