Dublin addict caught injecting himself in public toilets after blood seen dripping onto floor

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PUBLIC toilets should be obliged to have special lighting to prevent drug users from injecting themselves, a judge has said.

Judge Anthony Halpin's comment at Dublin District Court came during the hearing of Thomas McCabe, 36, from Bluebell Park, Dublin, who had pleaded guilty to causing criminal damage at a toilet cubicle in the Jervis Shopping Centre on Sept. 29 last.

The court heard that men and children had been using the gents toilets at the time. McCabe, who has 22 prior convictions, went into a cubicle and was arrested after blood was noticed dropping onto the floor.

A garda looked in and spotted McCabe injecting heroin into his groin and there was blood over the toilet bowl, floor and walls.

It cost €100 to clean up, the court was told. Judge Halpin declined an offer to look at photos taken of the scene. 

When he asked if the toilets had a certain type of florescent blue lighting to ensure people could not use the facilities for drug use he was told they were not present.

He said that should be obligatory. The court heard McCabe's prior convictions included theft and drug supply offences. 

He said he understood that drug users have to feed their habit but this was not appropriate.

His barrister Aifric Hurrell said the father-of-three had intended to clean up and had brought alcohol wipes with him. At the time he had recently suffered a family bereavement. He is engaging with a drug treatment centre, she also said.

Judge Halpin accepted that the man had been depressed and was looking for “some release”. He spared McCabe a jail sentence and bound him over to keep the peace for six months.