A twelve year old boy has told a court how a needle filled with “body fluids” from a woman with HIV was jabbed in his hand after he flushed her drug stash down the toilet.
Jacqueline O’Neil faces prison after she “culpably and recklessly” pricked the youngster, who cannot be named for legal reasons, with the uncapped needle, reports The Mirror.
The schoolboy gave evidence at a proof in mitigation hearing to establish the exact circumstances of the incident.
He told the court Ms O’Neil was clearly under the influence of drugs and was surrounded by drug paraphernalia when he found her in the living room with a syringe stuck in her leg.
Ms O’Neil, giving evidence herself, admitted she had taken heroin but claimed the boy had “totally fabricated” the circumstances leading up to him being pricked and branded him a “liar”.
Giving evidence through a CCTV link, the boy said he had taken a foil wrap containing heroin and had flushed it down the toilet.
He said: “She tried to slap it out of my hand. There was a needle sitting on a pillowcase and when I came back in she started waving at me. It hit me on the hand.”
The boy said it had gone in so deep he had to physically extract it himself before leaving.
Ms O’Neil claimed that she had been trying to protect the boy when he was stuck by the needle. In her version of events Ms O’Neil claimed the boy had been handed the needle by the other adult and that she was trying to take it from him when he was stuck.
Fiscal depute Saima Rasheed asked: “His position is that there was a syringe in your thigh and the barrel was full of blood.
“He saw a wrap, thought it contained heroin and went to flush it down the toilet.
“You tried to take it from his hand. He managed to flush it and on his way back you were waving a needle about. He tried to get out while you were waving it and struck him, so much so that he had to pull it out.”
Ms O’Neil said: “That’s fabricated – he is lying.”
But a sheriff ruled the boy’s version was true – and said Ms O’Neil was “not credible”.
Miss Rasheed said the boy had suffered no ill-effects as a result of the incident and had not become infected.
Ms O’Neil, 32, of Byron Crescent, Dundee, pleaded guilty on indictment to a charge of culpable and reckless conduct and a further charge of assault.
Sheriff Lorna Drummond QC ruled that O’Neil’s version of events was “not credible or reliable” and that the boy’s “detailed, clear and straightforward” account was corroborated by the other adult witness.
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