Sen­tence de­ferred on nui­sance caller

The Oban Times - - News -

A TIREE mother has pleaded guilty to mak­ing abu­sive tele­phone calls to the is­land’s doc­tors and so­cial work staff.

Mar­garet Bell, 64, of 12 Struthan Ter­race, Cross­apol, ad­mit­ted re­peat­edly call­ing staff at Tiree Med­i­cal Prac­tice, at all hours of the day and night, be­tween Fe­bru­ary 12 and June 26 this year.

Oban Sher­iff Court heard on Mon­day July 4, Bell made the calls to com­plain about the qual­ity of care, and while some were just silent oth­ers turned of­fen­sive and threat­en­ing.

Procu­ra­tor Fis­cal Eoin McGinty said duty doc­tors could not func­tion after re­peat­edly re­ceiv­ing abu­sive calls from Bell while on call, when they were un­able to turn off their phones. Po­lice gave her a fi­nal warn­ing to cease, but she was ar­rested when the calls started again.

The court heard Bell moved to the is­land seven years ago with her two sons now aged in their 30s and 40s. In June 2015 her el­dest son was di­ag­nosed with ter­mi­nal can­cer.

De­fend­ing, Jane McLaren ex­plained the pres­sures and strains made Bell turn to al­co­hol, which was when she would call Tiree Med­i­cal Prac­tice.

‘She is sure she will not go back to the is­land and con­tinue to drink,’ Ms McLaren said: ‘[She] only wants to go back to look after her chil­dren.’

Bell gave a solemn un­der­tak­ing not to drink al­co­hol to Sher­iff Ruth An­der­son, who summed up: ‘This is ex­tra­or­di­nary. You have dis­turbed and up­set peo­ple from whom you ex­pected and re­ceived care. No more phone calls!’

Sher­iff An­der­son de­ferred sen­tenc­ing un­til Au­gust 16.

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