ON the cusp of the main part of the tourist season, people looked on in shock as “bad blood” boiled over when two customers clashed in a shop in Portrush.
Mother-of-two Jade Erin Loughrey (40), of Skerrymor Place in the town, was disorderly and assaulted a woman on June 20 in 2017, the December 3 sitting of Coleraine Magistrates Court heard.
A prosecutor said the defendant reportedly said to the injured party: “You are not with your grand kids today are you?” before punching her and dragging her to the ground by the hair whilst using bad language.
A defence lawyer said “neither family gets on with the other, there is bad blood between them”.
The court was told it was a “very unedifying incident in a busy local shop” in Portrush and the attack was “totally unjustifiable”.
CCTV shown in court showed amazed customers looking on as staff ran to break-up the incident.
District Judge Peter King said: “Regardless of the past the incident was unprovoked” and he said it happened at a time when the shop was busy ahead of the main part of the tourist season.
Loughery, who had more than 40 previous convictions and who is on Employment and Support Allowance “for anxiety”, was given a three months prison term, suspended for two years; given a one year Restraining Order and told to pay £200 compensation to the victim.
The defendant, speaking from the dock, claimed: “They are continuously on my case”.
She asked: “What are you meant to do when someone attacks you?”
Judge King said police should be contacted by anyone with concerns.