Man ‘has no memory of rioting due to coma’


A man was jailed yesterday for rioting twice in Belfast after claiming his memory had been wiped from being in a coma.

Thomas Johnston received a three-month prison sentence over his involvement in two separate outbreaks of disorder last year – in the Woodvale area on July 12 and during disorder at North Street and Royal Avenue on August 9.

Even though the 33-year-old – of Mayo Court in the city – pleaded guilty to two counts of riotous behaviour, he told police he had no recollection of the events.

Belfast Magistrates’ Court heard his severe memory loss was a consequence of a drug overdose which plunged him into a coma doctors feared he would never recover from.