Teen apprehended after gardai  noticed damp patch on trousers

Teen apprehended after gardai noticed damp patch on trousers

By Isabel Hayes

A teenage burglar who was previously caught for wearing flip-flops was apprehended once again after gardai noticed a give-away damp patch on the back of his trousers.

Dublin Circuit Criminal Court heard Martin Connors was arrested after a garda noticed he had a wet patch on his trousers, which was consistent with having climbed over the wet wall of the house he had just broken into.

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Dublin Circuit Criminal Court

Connors (19) of Cloonmore Park, Tallaght, pleaded guilty to one count of burglary at Kippure Avenue, Walkinstown on January 11, 2019.

He also pleaded guilty to one count of possessing a chisel at Kilmashogue Avenue, Walkinstown on the same date.

He is currently serving a three-and-a-half year sentence for breaking into a family home and robbing a pizza delivery man in August 2018. In that case, Connors was wearing flip-flops and white socks when he carried out the crimes and was linked to them after the flip-flops were found in the getaway car. He has 47 previous convictions.

On Friday, Judge Martin Nolan ordered Connors to serve a further six months once his current sentence is complete. He noted that the burglary was at the lower end of the scale, the house was empty at the time and nothing was taken.

Garda Gary Cleary told the court he was called to the area by a woman who had witnessed three men breaking into a nearby house.

When he entered the home in question, it was empty. The three men had apparently jumped over the back wall, the court heard.

Garda Cleary drove around the area before he came across Connors walking down the road. He had a damp patch on the back of his trousers that was consistent with having climbed over the damp wall.

He was out of breath and unable to say why he was in the area. The two other burglars have not been identified. The owner of the home declined to give a victim impact statement.

Sarah Jane O’Callaghan BL, defending, told Judge Nolan her client had come before him a number of times before but that this time, he was determined to turn his life around.

She said he is finding custody very difficult given the current climate and is unable to have visitors or see his partner and baby son.

She said Connors had a dysfunctional upbringing, in which both his parents served prison sentences for crimes. His mother was jailed for three years for social welfare fraud when Connors was just 12 years old.

He developed drug addiction issues as a teenager.

“He has always been anaesthetised from crime,” Ms O’Callaghan said. “Growing up, that was a normality.”

She said a probation services report found Connors was a “sensitive, vulnerable young man” with significant anger issues in relation to his upbringing.

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