DNA on Budweiser bottles in a GAA club led gardai to catch a juvenile offender, who has appeared before Limerick District Court charged with more than 20 offences including thousands of euro worth of damage to property.
The 17-year-old, who cannot be identified as he is underage, pleaded guilty to a series of offences at Claughaun GAA club on February 27 last. The teenager was just last week placed under a one year detention and supervision order by Limerick Circuit Court for his part in a burglary in Herbert’s bar in Lisnagry.
Inspector Seamus Ruane, Roxboro, said inspite of calling for a probation report in the past for the young man, the accused has “come to the attention of the gardai persistently”.
Inspector Ruane told the court that at the GAA grounds the telephone wires and camera system had been damaged by the teenager and another offender, who is not currently before the courts. The males consumed alcohol at the bar, and stole cigarettes from the machine, which was badly damaged on the night.
The juvenile originally denied his part in the offence and denied it was him seen on CCTV stills. Despite his insistence that he was not involved, Insp Ruane said a DNA comparison was done and the accused’s DNA was on a number of bottles.
A window was damaged to the value of €200, and €1,000 worth of damage was caused to the cigarette machine. Other costs of damages were not furnished to the court. Referring to this and a litany of other offences, solicitor Tom Kiely said the matters took place over a short period of time, and his client has been in St Patrick’s Institute since February 28.
“He was always a quiet young boy growing up,” said Mr Kiely, adding that he had fallen in with the wrong peer group and involved himself with “seasoned persons”.
He said these offences were never committed solely on his own, and asked Judge Eugene O’Kelly not to add to a sentence which has already been imposed in the Circuit Court.
Judge O’Kelly imposed a six month detention order on the matters relating to Claughaun GAA club, involving theft and criminal damage. A further four month detention order was imposed for handling stolen property to run consecutively. Among the other charges against him in court were the thefts of an iPod on High Street on February 7, 2002, theft at Modern Man barber shop on October 8, 2011, stealing jewellery worth €300, and criminal damage caused to the window of a vehicle. He also faced a number of road traffic offences, including no road tax, no insurance, no licence, no identification for the vehicle, and not wearing a crash helmet on his motorbike. He has been disqualified from driving for two years and fined €100.