Tipperary man who spat at garda and stole cash and mobile phone jailed for 10 months

Tipperary man who spat at garda and stole cash and mobile phone jailed for 10 months

A man who stole a mobile phone from a house in Nenagh and money from cars parked in a housing estate has been jailed for a total of 10 months by Nenagh District Court.

Sergeant Regina McCarthy told the court how a man living in the Coill Fuinseoige estate discovered the front door of his house open at 1:40 a.m. on March 25, 2021 and his cell phone missing on the hall table.

Gardaí then confronted the accused, Christian O”Brien, 21, with an address of 115 Carrig Rua, Nenagh, who was cycling on a main road.

He was drunk and swerving on the road.

A cell phone located on his person turned out to be the property of the man in the house.

In a separate incident, on March 24, 2021, Mr O’Brien stole a total of around €10 in coins from two cars parked outside other homes on the same estate.

On February 23, 2022, he attempted to get into three vehicles in the Nenagh area, stealing a pair of sunglasses from one of the cars.

On the same day he was arrested under the Drugs Act in Mitchel Street, Nenagh, and held at the local guardhouse.

He was then released, but was arrested again the same day in Banba Square and brought back to the police station.

While in custody, he abused the gardaí in the station and grabbed a member of the force by the throat and attempted to punch another officer and spat at another.

On May 4, 2022, he was confronted by the gardaí while intoxicated at Carrig Rua.

He was arrested for being drunk in a public place and for engaging in threatening and abusive behavior.

He must have been pepper sprayed as Gardaí tried to get him into a patrol car.

He spat at officers during his subsequent detention at the Garda station.

His spitting in the station earned him a bill for €150 in cleaning costs.

Sergeant McCarthy said Mr O’Brien had a total of 69 previous convictions and was given a suspended sentence for a separate offense against him.

Defense lawyer Elizabeth McKeever said Mr O’Brien had already been in custody since the summer and celebrated his 21st birthday in jail last month.

He was a young man well known to the court.

He had been placed in an institution when he was a minor and had had a difficult upbringing.

After coming out of care, he fell between two stools, had been homeless for some time and had addiction issues. He had robbed cars to obtain small sums of money.

Ms McKeever said Mr O’Brien was a very bright and intelligent young man and was now studying in prison and hoping to take his school leaving certificate, although the subjects offered in custody were limited.

He had pleaded guilty to his offenses at the earliest opportunity, but he knew he risked more time in jail, said Ms McKeever, who asked the judge to be lenient given her client’s young age.

Judge Elizabeth MacGrath said she had no choice but to impose a custodial sentence given the number of offenses described in court.

She sentenced Mr O’Brien to a total of 10 months, expressing the hope that he would benefit from education while in prison.


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