A woman who attacked her former neighbours from a Donegal island after gossiping and rumours on Facebook is to do 60 hours community service in lieu of three months in jail.
Amanda Rodgers appeared at Falcarragh District Court after she attacked three women from Tory Island.
The 29-year-old was charged with a number of charges of assault and making threats against the women from Tory Island.
One of her victims, a woman in her 60s, claimed she was “kicked black and blue” when she came across her by accident in Falcarragh.
The accused was charged with assaulting Bridget Doohan, a woman in her 60s, at Ballina, Falcarragh on August 23rd, 2019.
Ms Doohan had known Rodgers since she was a child on the island and had simply said hello to her on the street on the day in question.
The victim claimed that Rodgers then asked if she was talking to her today before she suddenly came back and began to slap her in the face repeatedly.
Rodgers knocked Mrs Doohan’s glasses off and continued to slap and kick her accusing her of telling other people about her business.
She added “She kicked me until I was black and blue and kept slapping me again and again and again.
“I have grandchildren and I was afraid that she was going to come after them and I was afraid she would get the wee children and hurt them.”
She had to pay €225 in medical bills to her doctor as a result of the attack and a further €180 for new glasses.
On July 23rd, Rodgers attacked another neighbour, Grainne McGinley, 55, on Falcarragh’s Main Street by threatening her and then grabbed her by the throat.
She also attacked another neighbour, Bridgeen Callaghan at the Centra Supermarket in Falcarragh on September 6th.
The court was told that this followed threats on Facebook by Rodgers on the 6th and 8th of September.
Solicitor Mr Patsy Gallagher told the court that his client had a serious issue and was addicted to cannabis.
He said “She comes from a small island community where they all frequent and know eachother. She became addicted to cannabis on the mainland and went into a deep, dark hole in 2019.
“She has got treatment but she still has to regain the trust of her community, a small community. She offers her wholesome and heartfelt apologies to these women for what she has done.
“This was a very sick young lady and I hope the victims realise she was sick. In certain communities, drugs are frowned upon and it is a black mark against you,” he said.
The court heard that Ms Rodgers had worked hard at recovery and was now clean of cannabis and had engaged very well with the Probation Services.
She had also paid €500 to her first victim Ms Doohan.
Judge Paul Kelly said she had also taken part in the restorative justice process and had demonstrated an understanding of the harm she did to her victims.
He noted she had done a drug rehabilitation course saying “She has made great progress and has to be commended for that. She is a different person.”
However, he added that this was a sequence of offences over a relatively short period which caused great upset and distress to the ladies who were unfortunate enough to encounter Ms Rodgers.
For the assault on Ms Doohan, he sentenced Rodgers to 60 hours community service in lieu of three months in prison and for the assault on Ms McGinley he bound her to the peace for two years.
The other charges including abusing Gardai were taken into consideration.