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Teen accused of attacking four nurses in hospital refused bail

By Alan Erwin

Published 05/02/2016

A teenager who allegedly attacked four female nurses and another patient on a psychiatric ward must remain in custody, the High Court ruled
A teenager who allegedly attacked four female nurses and another patient on a psychiatric ward must remain in custody, the High Court ruled

A teenager who allegedly attacked four female nurses and another patient on a psychiatric ward must remain in custody, the High Court ruled.

Robert Davey was refused bail amid claims he rained blows on one victim as she lay on the ground and locked another in a staff room to inflict further violence at Lagan Valley Hospital.

They suffered injuries including whiplash and ligament damage, a judge was told.

Prosecutors had argued that Davey should not be released because he poses a serious danger to the public.

The 19-year-old, of Drumbeg Drive in Lisburn, Co Antrim, faces charges of attempted grievous bodily harm with intent, three counts of assault occasioning actual bodily harm, common assault and false imprisonment.

He is accused of launching unprovoked attacks while a voluntary inpatient on the ward in August last year.

Kate McKay, prosecuting, claimed he left the sleeping area and knocked a nurse to the ground with a single blow to the head.

Davey then allegedly continued to punch her as she lay on the floor.

A male patient who tried to intervene was also attacked, and later bitten so hard in the arm his wound started bleeding, the court heard.

Despite being restrained Davey kicked out repeatedly at a second nurse, lashing out at her to break free, according to Mrs McKay.

She claimed he then ran after a third nurse who shut herself into a station for staff on the ward, only for the accused to get inside with her and lock the door.

"He punched her on multiple occasions to the head, causing her to fall over," Mrs McKay said.

"She managed to get away from him and got out, but collapsed outside from the assault."

A fourth nurse was also struck but managed to roll away, the court was told.

Davey was eventually restrained on the ground until police arrived at the hospital.

CCTV footage captured the incident, the prosecutor added.

Opposing bail, she argued: "This is a young man we would say is very much a danger to the public.

"There's a major aggravating factor when it's medical staff assaulted in this way."

Defence counsel contended that Davey should get out of custody due to the delay in the case reaching any trial. But refusing bail, Judge Gordon Kerr QC ruled there was no change of circumstances to warrant his release.

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