ADHD no excuse for crime, says Ipswich magistrate
LAW-BREAKERS diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder won't be getting any sympathy from Ipswich's newest magistrate.
Magistrate Stuart Shearer, who began work at the Ipswich Courthouse last month, said he believed being diagnosed with ADHD was no excuse for criminal activity.
He made his opinion known during the sentencing of Clint Graham Baranyai, who was charged with creating a public nuisance and obstructing police.
Baranyai had been arrested after he verbally threatened a person being questioned by police. Officers were called to Cocktails nightclub at 3.45am on June 6 in relation to an alleged brawl.
Police prosecutor Sergeant Brad Dick said police were interviewing witnesses when Baranyai approached one of the witnesses and challenged him to fight.
The officers warned the 29-year-old to get back. Instead, Baranyai continued to yell threats and lunged at the witness.
He was pepper-sprayed by police and taken to the watchhouse.
Defence lawyer Erin Dwan said Baranyai had no criminal history and was drunk when he committed the offences. She said the father of two suffered from depression and anxiety, and had been diagnosed with ADHD as a child.
Mr Shearer, who is building a reputation for his no-nonsense approach to justice, said he believed ADHD was "a load of rubbish".
"I have very little time for this ADHD nonsense," he said. "It's people trying to medicalise what 20 years ago was just an annoying kid."
Mr Shearer told Baranyai he had behaved "like an infant" and that he needed to "grow up". He said being drunk or being diagnosed with ADHD offered no excuse.
Baranyai was fined $900. No convictions were recorded.