Martial arts coach who stole from cars is spared prison term
A martial arts coach who was caught hiding with stolen property from cars in a Dublin estate has avoided a prison sentence after he was deemed suitable for community service work.
Darren Flood had been drinking whiskey with friends some hours before he commit- ted the offences, Swords District Court heard.
Gda Alan Carroll found the 21-year-old hiding behind a wheelie bin in the early hours in Somerton estate, Donabate, after receiving reports of a male acting suspiciously.
Flood admitted he had taken a mobile phone and €15 in cash from two cars parked in the estate.
Gda Carroll said the owners of the property were not aware Flood had taken the items.
Flood, of Portland Row, Dublin 1, pleaded guilty to handling the stolen mobile phone and €15 in cash at Somerton, Dona- bate, on March 5.
Gda Carroll said no damage was caused to the cars when Flood removed the items.
Defence barrister Patrick Jackson said Flood, who has four previous convictions, had drunk a bottle of whiskey on the night.
"He was out with friends and spent all of his money on whiskey," he said.
"He then fell out with his friends and went off to commit these offences."
Mr Jackson said Flood is now involved in martial arts and coaches and trains people in the sport.
"His father feels this is making a difference as it is keeping him occupied and he now has a passion for something," said the lawyer.
After a positive probation report was handed in to court, Judge Dermot Dempsey imposed 240 hours of community service work in lieu of two months in prison.