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27/10/2021

County Derry teenager bit officer on the leg and spat at police

The 19-year-old has been handed a prison sentence.

County Derry teenager bit officer on the leg and spat at police

A Magherafelt teenager who bit an officer on the leg following her arrest for assaulting another woman has been handed a prison sentence.

Saiyaana Hickey, of Westland Gardens, Magherafelt, appeared via video link at Magherafelt Magistrates Court last week and entered guilty pleas to a number of charges in connection with two incidents.

Around 9.00pm on May 3 2021, police had responded to reports of an ongoing incident at Greenvale Park, Magherafelt.

The homeowner had reported being jumped on and punched two or three times after she had refused to give Hickey her phone so she could play music on it.

The injured party was then attacked again by the defendant, who jumped on her, held her around the neck and punched her on the top of her head.

Hickey then threw the injured party to the ground and punched her again multiple times as she attempted to ring the police.

A number of injuries were sustained by the injured party as a result of the incident, and after her arrest, Hickey made no comment at interview.

During a further incident on June 7 2021, police attended Greenvale Park again at around 4.30pm following a report of criminal damage to the property.

On arrival, they spoke with two witnesses, including the defendant's mother, who said she had attended the address and found her daughter inside.

The defendant's mother explained to police that after she had confronted her about being at the address, Hickey smashed a mirror, damaged a toilet and a control panel at the premises.

Police arrested the defendant, but after attempting to handcuff her, she pulled her arms away and shouted: “Get the f**k away. Ginger c**t, you can't f**king arrest me.”

Hickey was then further arrested for disorderly behaviour and resisting police, and after expressing concerns about the defendant, called an ambulance to attend the scene.

While police were attempting to get control of Hickey, she lashed out at a police constable, punching them on the arm and scraping them.

The police constable was then helping Hickey into the ambulance when she bit them on the right thigh, and spat on their leg.

Hickey refused to engage with ambulance staff and was taken to Antrim Area Hospital, where police observed her scream at the top of her voice: “I don't f**king care if there are sick kids here, take me to custody.”

Police further arrested the defendant for assault on police and disorderly behaviour in the hospital and conveyed her to Antrim custody.

Hickey provided a breath sample of 50mg, which was in breach of a court bail condition not to consume alcohol.

Defence for Hickey conceded the offences were sustained examples of violent behaviour inflicted on people during the course of their employment, and that one took place in hospital was an aggravating factor.

The court heard how the defendant had been under the influence of various substances at the time of the incidents, and that she had suffered addiction issues as well as a difficult personal background.

Hickey had spent long periods of her childhood in care, and is currently seeing a psychiatrist for some medical issues.

Judge Mullan said the 19-year-old had amassed quite a record that would stick with her for the rest of her life, and advised her to continue to engage with services that could help her.

She sentenced Hickey to seven months' imprisonment for the offences, and advised her this was an opportunity to learn something from her time in custody.

“I don't want to see you back in court again,” added Judge Mullan.

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