A Derry woman with 58 previous convictions for disorderly behaviour, 22 for obstructing police and 32 for assaulting police, has gone from “being a nuisance to a menace,” District Judge Barney McElholm has said.
Diana Wade (35), of Fergleen Mews in the Galliagh area of the city, admitted a series of disorderly behaviour charges on various dates as well as charges of assault on police and obstruction.
The court heard that on 18 April last year, police were on patrol in Fergleen Park after reports of a youth setting fires.
While they were there Wade started shouting at one officer calling him “a faggot.”
She was warned about her behaviour but persisted and people in the area tried to get her to calm down.
The court was told on the same date in the same area, police were carrying out an operation and came under attack from stones and potatoes.
The court heard they had occasion to arrest a relative of Wade's when she intervened and tried to prevent an officer from arresting the man, inciting the crowd to attack police.
The court was told police had to use CS spray and in the course of the incident an officer sustained a hand injury.
The court heard on 2 May, police were dealing with a suspect device in the Fergleen Park area and again came under attack and that Wade entered the cordoned off area and had to be physically removed.
The court was told on 12 July, there was another suspect device in the same area during which Wade directed “a tirade of abuse” at police and was warned about her behaviour.
Defence solicitor, Seamus Quigley, said alcohol underpinned the offending
He said the last time Wade had a suspended sentence she did not offend during that period.
Judge McElholm said it would be one thing if she was just being abusive to police but she was actually inciting people to attack police with stones “and potatoes bizarrely enough.”
He imposed a sentence of 12 months suspended for three years.
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