Portlaoise Court: Forged prescription and abused staff

Portlaoise man's behaviour 'appalling'

Portlaoise Court: Forged prescription and abused staff

A Portlaoise man who used appalling language and threatened a pharmacist after he was refused service on a forged prescription has been sentenced to a month in jail.

Christopher O’Brien (28), 56 Lakeside Gardens, Kilminchy, was charged with forging a prescription, and threatening or abusive behaviour, at Kilminchy Pharmacy, on May 18 this year.

Inspector Aidan Farrelly gave evidence that the accused attended at the pharmacy with a prescription he had altered, looking to acquire diazepam.

The pharmacist noticed the prescription had been altered and refused to give O’Brien the drug, at which point he became abusive and aggressive.

Insp Farrelly said that O’Brien used abusive language and threatened the pharmacist, putting her in fear.

The inspector gave evidence that the accused said: “You’d better f**king give it to me, you fat f**king cow.”

The court heard that O’Brien called the woman “a wagon” and “a cow”, and he pointed his phone at her, saying: “I’ll definitely be f**king back for that prescription.”

The accused had 50 previous convictions.

Defence, Ms Josephine Fitzpatrick said her client denied using the language as outlined, as “it is not language he would normally use”, although he accepted he had been abusive.

Ms Fitzpatrick said the accused had issues with anger and ADHD, and he became aggressive and caused difficulty on the day.

Defence said that O’Brien would be prepared to pay compensation to the injured party, but he would need a week to get it as his social welfare had been reduced.

He has previously completed community service, said Ms Fitzpatrick.

Judge Catherine Staines described his behaviour as absolutely appalling, as he had abused a woman just doing her job.

“It's just not acceptable,” she said.

The judge went on to say she had been considering imposing a six-month prison sentence, but as O’Brien had pleaded guilty she instead imposed one month in prison.

Recognisance was fixed in the event of an appeal.