January 13, 2014

A man who claimed he was the Pope bit a Garda when he tried to arrest him for calling him names.

McLaughlin appeared at Letterkenny District Court.

McLaughlin appeared at Letterkenny District Court.

Sean McLaughlin was told by Gardai to go home when they encountered him at St Mary’s Road, Buncrana in the early hours of Sunday morning last, January 12th.

He roared ‘w*****s’ twice at Gardai as they patrolled the town and then gave them the ‘middle finger.’

When he was asked for his name he told Gardai he was “John Paul The Pope.”

McLaughlin, of Cloontagh, Clonmany, was then arrested but as he was being cautioned he bit one of the arresting Gardai.

Letterkenny District Court was told today that McLaughlin, 23, remembered little about the incident as he had been drinking heavily.

He had returned home from Australia for Christmas where he had been working.

Solicitor Frank Dorrian said his client had no excuse or reason for his actions as he had never been in trouble before and had no malice towards the Gardai.

He said he was clearly under the influence of alcohol and apologised to the court.

His parents were with him in court and were also clearly deeply embarrassed by what had happened, added Mr Dorrian.

Mr Dorrian said his client was due on a flight back to Australia this evening (MON) at 10pm which he planned to be on.

Judge Paul Kelly asked the court how serious the bite to the Garda had been.

He was told he had attended Nowdoc and had received a tetanus injection as a precaution.

Judge Kelly said it was McLaughlin’s first offence and that the assault was at the lower end of the scale.

“The injury is at the lower end even though it was a nasty injury for the Garda to suffer and I don’t feel it was a focused assault,” he said.

He ordered McLaughlin to pay €300 to St Vincent De Paul and agreed to strike all matters out.