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In brief: Pair avoid jail after assault

TWO parents who assaulted a woman in front of their seven-year-old son in a city centre have avoided jail after paying €5,000 to their victim.

Karen Hedderman (28), of Aster Court, Keyes Park, Limerick, and her partner Mark Crawford (35), of O'Malley Park, Southill, Limerick, appeared in Limerick Circuit Criminal Court. They both pleaded guilty to assaulting Mary Moloney at William Street, Limerick, on April 28, 2011.

Judge Carroll Moran said it was "a nasty assault" and added that the pair had paid €5,000 in compensation.

He suspended a three-year sentence for the parents and bound them to the peace for three years.

A&E at Mater under repair

THE emergency department of the Mater Hospital in Dublin will close to the public from midnight on Sunday to 8am on Tuesday.

The closure is due to the relocation of the department to the new Whitty Building in the hospital.

Emergency department services during this 32-hour period will be provided by Beaumont Hospital, Tallaght Hospital, St Vincent's Hospital, Connolly Hospital and St James Hospital. Patients with minor injuries can attend the Mater Smithfield Rapid Injury Clinic in The Forge, Smithfield Market, Dublin 7.

Naked armed man caught

A NAKED man armed with a handgun was arrested after he went strolling through a town's snow-covered streets.

The man was seen near schools in the Austrian town of Moedling, south of Vienna.

He was later arrested with a woman companion in an apartment where police found a handgun and other weapons.

Officers suspect both were under the influence of drugs and alcohol.