County Limerick man jailed for burglary while he was on bail

Donal O’Regan

Reporter:

Donal O’Regan

Kilmallock Court House

Kilmallock Court House

A LIMERICK man has been sentenced to five months in prison for an offence he committed while out on on bail.

John Harris, aged 23, of De Valera Park, Bruree, pleaded guilty to a number of burglaries in Bruree.

Sergeant Michelle Leahy said on April 23, 2018, Harris entered two properties in Ballynoe, Bruree and removed property to an associate nearby. The burglaries were investigated by Garda David Higgins.

She told Judge Marian O’Leary that a Willard bike valued at €1,600 and a leafblower costing €400 were taken. In the second burglary, a chop saw, €1,000; strimmer, €300; con saw, €300 and chainsaw, €300 were stolen.

“Most items were recovered,” said Sgt Leahy.

On September 27, 2018, she said Harris entered the closed Costcutter’s shop in Bruree.

“He stole €1,850 in clothes and €349 in alcohol. The alcohol and €300 worth of the clothes was recovered,” said Sgt Leahy.

Kilmallock Court heard that Harris has eight previous convictions - all traffic offences.

Leanne Purcell, solicitor for Harris, said her client is a young man who wants matters dealt with today.

“Up to 14 months ago he was in a trade and had done three years of an apprenticeship in welding. His relationship broke down and he went down a wrong road. He went off the rails with drink and drugs. He can’t explain his actions,” said Ms Purcell.

The solicitor said her client’s instructions were that all the clothes and alcohol were recovered. However, Ms Purcell said he is more than willing to repay what he owes.

“He is on job seeker’s allowance. He owes €1,550 and is willing to pay €30 a week,” said Ms Purcell.

Sgt Leahy said that Harris was on bail when the burglary at the closed shop in Bruree, which was being used as a store, took place.

Judge Marian O’Leary sentenced Harris to five months in prison for breaking into the former Costcutter’s store on Main Street, Bruree.

She imposed a four month sentence suspended for two years for the burglary in Ballynoe, Bruree involving the bike and leafblower.

The second burglary in Ballynoe was taken into consideration by the judge.

Harris was also fined €200 for the theft of goods to the value of €15 in Penneys on O’Connell Street. The court heard he walked past all points of payment but was stopped by security guards.

Recognisance was fixed in the event of an appeal.