Belfast Telegraph

Addict who attacked women with bottle in Belfast city centre is caged

By Ashleigh McDonald

A Belfast man has been jailed for attacking five people in a city centre car park - one of whom was a woman recovering from cancer.

Declan McDade launched an unprovoked attack on three woman, then proceeded to assault two men who came to their aid.

Belfast Crown Court heard yesterday that McDade (25) was identified and later arrested after one of his victims took a picture of him on her mobile phone, which she then uploaded onto Facebook.

McDade, from Spamount Street, admitted seven offences on Belfast's Tomb Street on August 1, 2015, and was handed a three-year sentence.

He was given an additional two years and 10 months for an armed robbery that he and a co-accused carried out three months after the car park attacks.

The court heard that on August 1 three women who had attended the Gay Pride parade were drinking in the car park at Tomb Street when they were approached by McDade, who demanded alcohol.

A Crown prosecutor said the women initially refused the request, then one handed him a bottle of West Coast Cooler.

McDade took the bottle, then smashed it and attacked them.

One of the woman, who the court heard was recovering from cancer, was punched and attacked with the broken bottle, and was left with facial laceration which required stitches.

Two men who tried to help the women were also attacked.

Three months later, on November 17, McDade and 29-year-old Shaun Gault, from Edlingham Street in Belfast, robbed a Spar store on the Lisburn Road.

Both armed themselves with knifes and covered their faces before ordering staff to open the till. CCTV footage led police to a block of flats where they arrested Gault and McDade.

Defence barrister Martin O'Rourke revealed his client McDade was an addict with a history of drug misuse.

Telling the court McDade has "little recollection of the commission of these offences, no doubt due to the substances he was taking at the time", Mr O'Rourke revealed McDade was now taking steps to battle his addictions.

The defence barrister said that when the violence he used in August 2015 was recounted to McDade, he "expressed considerable shock at what he had done".

Defence barrister Jon Connolly, who represented Gault, also spoke of his client's addiction to drugs, which had been a "plague on his life".

He told Judge Smyth that the robbery at the Spar was committed after a "bender" lasting several days, and that Gault had since expressed remorse for his involvement.

Judge Smyth handed Gault a sentence of four-and-a-half years, which will be divided between two years and three months in custody and the same period on licence.

The judge handed McDade a sentence of two years and 10 months for the robbery. Half of McDade's sentence will be served in prison, with the remainder on licence.

Belfast Telegraph


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