A 48-year-old psychiatric nurse has been sentenced to twelve months in prison for assaulting another nurse with a syringe filled with sedating, anti-psychotic medication.
Kofi Kankam - with an address at 15 The Clarin, Athenry, Co Galway - denied a charge of assaulting Emer Hyland, causing her harm, at the Psychiatric Unit at University Hospital Galway, on 5 February last year.
Nurse Hyland, who is in her twenties, told the hearing at Galway District Court today that gardaí came into the male ward with a patient that evening who was very unwell.
She was dealing with another patient at the time who had absconded. She was sitting in the nurse's station having just got off the phone from speaking to security about that patient when she suddenly felt a sharp pinch in her left side.
Nurse Donna Long and Kankam had been standing behind her. Long was holding a kidney dish which contained two syringes, which had been prepared for the patient the gardaí had brought in.
"It's a very serious assault, to prick someone with a syringe and to have it done to you by another professional working with you is simply outrageous," the judge said.
Mr Martin said his client had returned from Africa to face the charge and he asked the judge to suspend any sentence or his client's career would be ended.
"It should be ended", Judge Fahy said before imposing a 12-month sentence.
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