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Friday, January 21, 2022

Elderly woman jailed for refusing to wear mask

Margaret Buttimer has been jailed for 90 days for refusing to wear a mask at SuperValu on two separate occasions.

The 66-year-old appeared before Bandon District Court after she was charged with both incidents that occurred at Riverview Shopping Centre in Bandon, Co Cork.

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Buttimer stated that she remembered being in SuperValu on both occasions on June 25th and July 1st but did not remember pleading guilty.

The sentencing was delayed for over an hour by Judge James McNulty in order to read a medical report from Dr. Eleanor Mullen who specialises in the psychiatry of old age, as well as a second report from a psychologist.

Judge McNulty stated, “Margaret Buttimer is entitled not to wear a mask at home or outdoors, but like every other citizen she is required by law to wear a mask when she enters a shop or other public indoor space,” while adding, “Unfortunately and regrettably, Margaret Buttimer has failed in her duty to take basic care for the protection of the health and safety of her fellow citizens.”

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He also stated that Buttimer had disregarded the rights of retail staff as well as “compliant shoppers, who may be vulnerable, or may be the carers of vulnerable children or elderly relatives,”.

A similar offence that occurred on February 12th resulted in Buttimer receiving a suspended sentence and a fine for not wearing a mask in Dunnes Stores.

She has been disqualified from doing community service due to her repeat offending.

Buttimer’s solicitor Plunkett Taaffe stated that she will not appeal the sentence.

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