'Menace' destroyed parking meter with an angle grinder and crowbar in ticket fury
A Dublin man who used a crowbar and angle grinder to destroy a parking meter because he was annoyed about a fine has received a two-year suspended sentence.
Garda Amanda King told Dublin Circuit Criminal Court she arrived at Chapel Lane in Swords and saw Peter Moore (25) putting an angle grinder and crowbar into the boot of a car.
She arrested him, and he later admitted in interview that he damaged the parking meter because he was angry about a parking fine.
Garda King agreed with defending barrister Paul Comiskey O'Keeffe that Moore had a cocaine and alcohol addiction, but that he cared for his mother, who has motor neuron disease.
Referring to the few weeks Moore has been in custody on the matter, Judge Martin Nolan told him: "I hope you've taken note of your surroundings - because if you keep going the way you are going it will become your habitat."
Judge Nolan described Moore as a vandal and noted his 47 convictions, including ones for road traffic offences, criminal damage and theft.
He said that Moore had an obligation to obey the law and added that he was "somewhat a menace", but noted his criminality was "mostly" for minor offences. Moore, of Lynnwood, Ballyboughal, pleaded guilty to criminal damage on January 20, 2015.
Fingal County Council put the cost of the damage at around €11,000, which included the re-installing of a new parking meter, disposing of the damaged one and removing the concrete base of the old one.
The judge ordered that €3,000 which Moore had raised be given to the council. Moore was given two years to raise a further €3,000 for the council.
Mr Comiskey O'Keeffe said Moore worked with the Homeless World Cup charity and helped them to fundraise. He said his client had taken "steps towards his rehabilitation".