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13:17 – 03 April 2009
A top Metropolitan Police officer with a string of commendations broke down in tears in court today after magistrates heard how he became moody and aggressive at a school quiz night that ended with him spitting beer over his partner.
DCI Gary McDade, 42, changed his plea to guilty at Stevenage Magistrates’ Court to assault during an incident at Letchmore Road Infants School on October 10 last year. At two previous hearing Mr McDade, of Surbiton, Surrey, had pleaded not guilty.
The court heard Mr McDade, a member of the CID office at Paddington Green police station, where terror suspects are held, has been suffering from psychiatric problems due to pressure of work.
As Mr Daniel O’Malley, prosecuting, began outlining the case, Mr McDade appeared upset and started to cry and a court usher handed him a box of tissues.
“There was a family quiz night at the school and the defendant went with his girlfriend and other friends. He was on a large amount of medication and he was drinking,” said Mr O’Malley.
“One of the team questioned his ability and there was a mood swing during which he started to use what I would term industrial language.
“He spat at his girlfriend and when he was interviewed by police he was co-operative.
“He is a man of good character and his girlfriend did not want him to be charged because he has been suffering from clinical depression.”
Mr Kevin Baumer, defending, said: “He was reckless in drinking alcohol. On the night he was remote, moody, aggressive and bumping into people.
“He had never drunk with medication before and he has no recollection of events that evening.
“He has never denied he spat the beer. He has been under care since 2008, has had a CT scan and later had a neurological check.”
At that point his partner got up in the public gallery looking distressed and told magistrates: “He is ill. He never hurt me” before leaving the court in tears.
Mr Baumer continued saying Mr McDade had suffered suicidal tenancies and continued to work as a senior police officer suffering from depression when he should not have worked.
“If he is convicted he faces disciplinary proceedings and faces either a reduction in rank or even dismissal from his job,” added Mr Baumer.
After retiring to consider their verdict the chairman of the magistrates Mr John Gribben told Mr McDade he would be given a conditional discharge for sixth months saying: “These were clearly a most unfortunate set of circumstances and you are a person of good service in the force. You can now go forward and we hope your life improves.”
Mr McDade was also ordered to pay £150 costs.