A 66-year-old Irish grandmother has been jailed once again due to her refusal to wear a face mask.
Margaret Buttimer from County Cork has been jailed for breaching bail conditions after she was caught shopping for Christmas presents without a face covering.
Ms. Buttimer was last month ordered by a District Court judge to stay away from shops and other places where the public gathers because of her refusal to wear a mask under Covid-19 rules.
It was reported by The Irish Times that Ms. Buttimer told Judge Colm Roberts that she went into a store “to do my Christmas shopping because I have nothing got for Christmas”. She said that she needed to buy presents for her grandchildren.
She said she did not shop online and refused to wear a face mask because she felt it was “taking from my freedom”.
“I take each day as it comes. That was today,” said Ms. Buttimer, who did not wear a mask in court.
The judge compared the Covid-19 regulations on face masks to wearing a seat belt to protect herself and also because it was the law. Ms. Buttimer agreed that wearing a seat belt did not take away her freedom.
The judge told Ms, Buttimer she was was putting him “in an impossible situation” where he has no other option but to refuse bail.
“I cannot have you putting other people in danger and blatantly breaching court orders. It would be sending a message that court orders mean nothing,” he said. “I am very sad to do this but I have no option."
Ms. Buttimer first appeared in court in May of this year and was sent to a weekend in Cork Prison after she refused to wear a face-covering at a local supermarket on February 12.
The court heard that she abused the store manager when he asked if she had a medical reason for not wearing a face mask. She allegedly became agitated with the store manager, calling him an "asshole" and telling him that she only answers to God.
Following on from this, in July Ms. Buttimer was sentenced to 90 days in prison for similar offenses that breached Covid-19 regulations.
Watch Margaret Buttimer's first appearance in court in May 2021 for breaching Covid-19 regulations:
#WATCH A grandmother who became abusive with the manager of a supermarket who challenged her for not wearing a face covering has been given a suspended sentence & fined €250
A large group gathered outside court today to support Margaret Buttimer@PaulByrne_1 #VMNews reports⤵️ pic.twitter.com/l3Re7N43Y8— Virgin Media News (@VirginMediaNews) May 24, 2021