GLASGOW – Last summer, Bradley Wallace spit on Father Thomas White as the priest spoke to parishioners outside of St. Alphonsus Church after Mass. This week, Wallace was sentenced to ten months in jail for the assault.
The twenty-four year old was arrested last year after investigators matched his DNA to the saliva found on Father White’s clothing. The incident occurred when a large Orange parade passed by the church.
According to Crux, the Orange Order is a Protestant fraternal order based primarily in Northern Ireland, but with a strong presence in Scotland. “It organizes marches in July to commemorate the victory of the Dutch-born Protestant King William of Orange, who defeated the army of the deposed Catholic King James II to secure the thrones of England, Ireland and Scotland at the Battle of the Boyne in Ireland on July 1, 1690,” Charles Collins reported.
Wallace admitted that his crime was motivated by anti-Catholicism.
“How could any twenty-four year old from Scotland not know that it is wrong to peddle sectarianism,” questioned Sheriff Andrew Cubie. “It is no doubt partly because of the ‘echo chamber’ effect of much social media, where your loyalties are displayed and perhaps your motivation identified.”
During the trial, the sheriff shared the details of the incident. The assault forced the Catholic priest to take refuge in the sanctuary of his church to avoid the crowd.
Sheriff Cubie also stated that Wallace’s sentence should serve as a warning to others who are tempted to act similarly.
“Bradley Wallace properly acknowledges that this offence is utterly reprehensible and, quite frankly, disgusting,” defense lawyer John Coogan told the court during the sentencing.
Wallace’s defense lawyer also explained to the court that Wallace asked for a meeting with Father White to apologize, but his bail conditions had prevented the meeting.