Woman, 82, 'feared she would be killed' by intruder at her home in Limerick

David Hurley

Reporter:

David Hurley

Limerick Circuit Court

Limerick Circuit Court

A PENSIONER who was pushed and knocked over by an intruder at her home in Limerick believed she was going to be killed, a court has heard.

Dean Hayes aged 29, of Lee Estate, Island Road has admitted stealing more than €1,000 in cash and two mobile phones after breaking into the home of the 82-year-old almost two years ago.

The defendant, who has a large number of previous convictions, will be sentenced in relation to the burglary and several other serious offences next month.

During a sentencing hearing, Garda Shaun O’Hagan said the defendant broke into the home in the Corbally area at around 9pm on May 8, 2016.

The woman, who lives alone, was watching television in a downstairs room when she was alerted to a shadow moving in the hallway.

When she opened the door, she encountered the defendant who pushed her back and onto the floor. She later told gardai she thought he would take her life.

In addition to the cash and mobile phones, Hayes stole various documents including the pensioner’s passport and bus pass.

Garda O’Hagan said while the woman, who suffers from a hearing impairment, was sore as a result of being knocked over she did not require any medical treatment.

“She was shaken,” he told John O’Sullivan BL, instructed by state solicitor Padráig Mawe adding that the woman spent some time in a nursing home following the incident.

While one of the mobile phones was recovered by gardai at the defendant’s home, none of the other property was recovered.

Hayes, the court heard, made admissions relating to the incident following his arrest telling gardai he was “f***** up on drugs” at the time.

Andrew Sexton SC said his client has a dysfunctional background and that  there is a history of drug abuse.

Having heard the evidence, Judge Tom O’Donnell adjourned all matters for sentencing on March 5, next.