Patient abused staff and threw hospital chairs

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A hospital patient who flung chairs about and ripped out a computer mouse has avoided being sent to jail.

Gary Byrne of Hawtree Park, Lisburn was told his behaviour in the Royal Victoria Hospital in Belfast “crossed the custody threshold”.

However, based on the 29-year-old’s troubled background, a judge instead imposed a probation order and community service.

Byrne pleaded guilty to criminal damage and disorderly behaviour charges.Belfast Magistrates’ Court heard he attended the Royal on October 2 last year to seek medical attention for his knee.

After asking to see the mental health team he started shouting abuse at staff and throwing chairs about.Prosecutors said Byrne continued to be aggressive, ripping out a computer mouse and damaging a usb port.

Defence counsel Michael Boyd accepted his client’s actions put him at risk of being sent to jail.Byrne was ordered to serve 75 hours community service alongside 12 months probation.