Shoplifter took boxes of painkillers and a jacket
A shoplifter who stole 48 boxes of painkillers and a children's jacket has been told to carry out community service to avoid a jail sentence.
Serial offender David Ward (43) admitted carrying out the thefts when he appeared in Dublin District Court.
Judge Ann Ryan ordered him to carry out 150 hours of community service instead of a six-month prison sentence.
She also told him to pay €147 in compensation to the victims.
Ward, with an address at Matt Talbot Court in the north inner city, pleaded guilty to theft.
Dublin District Court heard the first incident happened at the children's store Jojo Maman Bebe on Wicklow Street on July 22 last year.
A garda witness said Ward went in, took a jacket and placed it in a bag before leaving the store without paying.
He was later identified on CCTV but the property was not recovered.
On January 19 this year, Ward went to Aldi on Parnell Street and took 48 boxes of Panadol tablets.
He again put the stolen goods in a bag and left without paying.
In another incident, the accused was caught stealing T-shirts from a shop using a foil-lined bag to beat security sensors, a garda said.
The court heard the accused had 61 previous convictions, 44 of which were for theft.
He also had prior convictions for public order offences and failing to appear in court.
He had not lived at a fixed address for some time, his lawyer said.
Although he had pleaded guilty at an early stage, he realised the offences were serious given his previous record. He had received prison sentences in the past.
"I am urging the court to consider an alternative to custody by way of community service," his lawyer said.
The accused also had compensation to pay for the goods that were not recovered.
Ward consulted the probation service to assess his suitability for community service.
When he returned to court, the judge made the order after hearing Ward was found suitable.
She said the accused must comply with the order and stay out of trouble.