ALDI employee told his throat 'would be slit' during Limerick robbery

David Hurley

Reporter:

David Hurley

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david.hurley@limerickleader.ie

Judge Tom O’Donnell adjourned sentencing to next month to facilitate the preparation of a probation report

Judge Tom O’Donnell adjourned sentencing to next month to facilitate the preparation of a probation report

AN Aldi worker in Limerick was told his throat would be slit by a young man who threatened him with a scissors as he was walking to work.

Stephen Byrnes, aged 24, of Ballygrennan Road, Ballynanty has pleaded guilty to charges relating to an incident on March 21, 2015.

During a sentencing hearing, Detective Garda Gary Laide told Limerick Circuit Court the incident happened at Carey’s Road shortly before 6am.

He said the victim, who had left his home a short time earlier, was carrying a pouch containing keys to the store where he worked.

The defendant, he said, first approached the Polish national near the People’s Park and asked him for a cigarette and later if he could use his mobile phone.

John O’Sullivan BL, prosecuting, said the defendant became annoyed when the victim when he ignored him and that he then produced a scissors and threatened to cut his throat.

The victim managed to escape and immediately ran to the public office at Roxboro Road garda station where he provided gardai with a description of the culprit.

Byrnes, who has a number of previous convictions, was apprehended in the Hyde Road area a short time later but could not be questioned for several hours due to his level of intoxication.

“This was an intoxicated event,” said Mark Nicholas SC who added that his client’s admissions when he sobered up were critical.

The barrister also questioned Mr O’Sullivan’s assertion that the small nail scissors represented a “potentially deadly weapon”.

While accepting the incident had been traumatic for the victim, he said his client, who has a drug difficulty, had denied putting him “in fear”.

Judge Tom O’Donnell adjourned sentencing to next month to facilitate the preparation of a probation report.