25 Jun 2022

Man's wallet was stolen when seeking drugs in Offaly

Man's wallet was stolen when seeking drugs in Offaly

Man's wallet was stolen when seeking drugs in Offaly

A man had his wallet stolen when he was seeking illegal drugs in Birr, last Wednesday's sitting of Tullamore District Court heard.

Mark Jennings, Scurragh, Birr was charged with committing the theft from the man. The incident happened on January 7 last at Castle Mall, Birr.

Sgt James O'Sullivan told the court that the injured party travelled from Roscrea to Birr with the aim of buying illegal drugs.

“He met Mark Jennings on Main Street in Birr and asked Jennings to bring him somewhere where he could buy the drugs. Mark Jennings brought him to Castle Mall,' the court heard.

The injured party produced his wallet and Mr Jennings grabbed the wallet and a packet of cigarettes and ran away. There was €470 in the wallet and the cigarettes were worth €15.

The defendant is currently serving a prison sentence for a separate matter.

He has 53 previous convictions, including a number of theft convictions, possession of stolen property convictions, and possession of drugs for his own use.

Defending solicitor Donal Farrelly told the court his client was pleading guilty.

“He is 29 years of age and was a heroin user. He has done well on a methadone programme and is no longer using heroin. At the time, when this offence occurred, Mr Jennings was homeless and in a bad way.”

A Garda told the court that he wasn't sure the defendant was homeless at the time. “He wasn't living on the streets,” remarked the Garda. “He was staying in a Scurragh house.”

“Yes,” said Mr Farrelly, “but it wasn't a permanent address. He was living where he could.” The Garda said he accepted that.

Judge Patricia Cronin said Mr Jennings is a man of a relatively young age who has a high number of previous convictions.

“This was a nasty offence, where the injured party was left without the benefit of his funds and his cigarettes.”

She convicted and sentenced him to four months imprisonment.

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