Belfast Telegraph

Derry heroin addict with hepatitis C 'spat in police officer's face'

By George Jackson

A 26-year-old man charged with assaulting a female police officer by spitting in her face has been remanded in custody.

Corey Stefan McMullan, a former heroin addict with hepatitis C, has 96 previous convictions.

McMullan, from Bond's Hill in the Waterside area of Londonderry, is also charged with assaulting a second police officer by trying to spit in his face, disorderly behaviour, resisting arrest and possessing a plank of wood.

The offences are alleged to have occurred at Clooney Terrace, close to his address, on Monday evening.

At Derry Magistrates Court yesterday, a police witness said McMullan was arrested for breaching court bail by being extremely drunk in a public place.

After his arrest he became aggressive, and when he was put in the rear of a police car beside the female officer he spat in her face, the court heard. The officer said the defendant then threatened the police driver who stopped the car and turned to face the defendant.

"He tried to drag phlegm up from his throat but the driver punched him on the face to stop him from spitting at him," he said.

The defendant was arrested and at Strand Road station he repeatedly headbutted the walls of a cell.

The officer whose face was spat on was examined by a forensic medical officer and advised to go to hospital.

"He is flagged on the Prison Service system as having hepatitis C and he is aware he has it," the police witness told the court.

Opposing bail, the officer said the defendant was a danger to the public and had a high risk of reoffending given his previous convictions.

A defence solicitor said McMullan was a recovering heroin addict who denied spitting at the police officer.

The solicitor said the defendant had numerous facial injuries which he claimed had been caused when the police used excessive force on him.

District Judge Barney McElholm refused bail and remanded the defendant in custody.

Belfast Telegraph

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