A CASTLETROY man who robbed €160 from a fast-food restaurant after threatening a female staff member with a knife avoided a jail sentence because he has not been in any trouble since.
In February of last year, Mark O’Halloran, 34, of Bru na Grudain, Castletroy pleaded guilty to committing the offence on January 9, 2010.
During a sentencing hearing, Limerick Circuit Court was told O’Halloran entered the Subway store and ordered tea and a snack before grabbing the worker and ordering her to hand him cash from the till.
The culprit apologised to the woman at the time saying he needed the money.
The court was told the incident was captured on CCTV but that the culprit was not known to gardai.
A week after the robbery took place, a member of the investigation team spotted an oncoming motorist in the Dooradoyle area of the city and realised it was the person in the CCTV image.
The court heard that when Det Garda Brian Culbert saw the motorist his mind was immediately drawn back to the footage that he had viewed repeatedly with colleagues.
“When I spotted him driving, I knew straight away he was the person on the CCTV,” said Det Garda Culbert who noted the registration of the car and subsequently established that it belonged to the defendant.
Michael Collins BL, said his client suffers from depression and that he had never been in court before the incident.
During a review of the case this week, Judge Carroll Moran was told O’Halloran has not been in any trouble over the past year. He imposed a three year prison sentence, which he suspended for three years.