A man who admitted punching a police sniffer dog which had been deployed during a city centre anti-drugs operation last year was given a conditional discharge for 18 months at the Magistrates Court in Derry yesterday.
James Boyle (32), from Moss Park, pleaded guilty to a charge of “attempting to damage or destroy a police dog called Max” outside a nightclub in Shipquay Street on December 16, 2011. He also admitted assaulting a police officer on the same night.
A prosecution solicitor told the court that Boyle became aggressive towards the dog. He punched the dog on the nose and hit out at a police officer.
The police then used CS spray on Boyle before they arrested and handcuffed him.
A defence barrister said Boyle “believed he'd been approached from behind by the police dog and he instinctively struck out”.
Deputy District Judge Oonagh Mullan asked if any injuries were sustained by the dog. When she was told none, she imposed the conditional discharge.