A YOUNG man who burgled the same cafe twice in the space of a week has been sentenced to eight months in prison.
Joseph O’Loughlin, 18, of Glenbrook, Old Singland Road, had committed a raft of offences immediately after falling back into a prescription drug habit, his solicitor Tom Kiely told Limerick District Court.
O’Loughlin pleaded guilty to breaking into Olio & Farina on Little Catherine Street in the early hours of April 14 last, having smashed the front window with a rock. He stole a €400 cash float from the till, Sgt Donal Cronin told Judge Eugene O’Kelly.
O’Loughlin targeted the same cafe in the same fashion on April 19. Gardai had arrived to find O’Loughlin exiting through a broken window shortly after 5am. The accused had almost €300 in cash on his person as well as bags of copper coins.
In between these burglaries, O’Loughlin had also broken into another business - Sat City on Gerald Griffin Street. And on April 16, gardai in an unmarked patrol car had seen O’Loughlin running along Parnell Street and enter the Red Rose Cafe. When they caught up with him, they had observed O’Loughlin “try to discreetly discard a jigsaw blade on the counter”, Sgt Cronin said, an incident arising from which he was subsequently charged with possession of an article.
Mr Kiely said his client had been five months off prescription drugs until April 13 last, the date of the first offence for which he was before the court. “All these offences happened over six days, having been doing so well in the previous five months” through attending with the Probation Service and drug counselling.
O’Loughlin was sentenced to five months in prison for theft from Olio and Farina on April 14 and a consecutive three-month term for causing criminal damage on the same date.