23-year-old accused of punching elderly women in face, remanded in custody

A 23-year-old Strabane man accused of punching a 67-year-old woman in the face at the weekend was remanded in custody at Omagh Magistrates Court on Tuesday.

Bryan McShane, of Lisnafin Park, is charged with assaulting the pensioner, on the Melmount Road last Saturday evening.

A detective constable told the court that he believed he could connect the accused to the charge.

The court heard that the police received a report at around 5.30pm on Saturday that a man had assaulted a 67-year-old woman, who had just left her home in sheltered accommodation using a zimmerframe.

The woman was taken to hospital with a swollen eye and was also spitting up blood.

The detective constable said that the police were told that the defendant had allegedly been seen going through the victim's handbag. He added that a witness to the incident had identified the alleged assailant as 23-year-old, Bryan McShane.

The PSNI officer said that the police were strongly opposed to releasing the defendant on bail, saying that the defendant was recently released from custody, and that there had been concerns about his state of mind while he was in prison.

The district judge Neil Rafferty described the incident as a "random, unprovoked" assault on a 67-year-old woman and remanded the defendant in custody, to appear before the court again via videolink on April 20.