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Thug threatened pregnant woman during carjacking

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David Richards

David Richards

Court Collins.

David Richards

a young man who hijacked a car from a heavily-pregnant woman and her husband and threatened them with a steering wheel lock has been ordered to come up with €5,000 compensation.

Susan O'Leary told the court she feared she would lose her unborn child when she and her husband Roddie had to run on an icy road to get away from the car thieves.

She also said she now suffers from depression and anxiety and never leaves the house.

David Richards (26), of Basin Lane, St James's Gate, pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to the unauthorised taking of a car at Meath Street, Dublin, on January 1, 2010.

He also admitted to drink driving, dangerous driving and driving without insurance and a licence during the same incident.

Judge Patrick McCartan remarked that Richards had committed an "appalling set of crimes" and that "even if he pays the compensation it is not certain that I won't send him to prison".

Gda Cailin Doherty told the prosecution that at 1.35am on New Year's Day in 2010, Mr and Mrs O'Leary's BMW was taken from them by force by Richards and another man.

gun

Richards' accomplice said he would shoot them if they did not hand over the keys and get out of the car.

They said they did not see a gun but the man held his hand in his shirt.

Richards had a bottle in his hand as if to threaten the couple. He took the car wheel lock and threatened them.

Richards, who has three previous convictions, was arrested a short time later.

The defence said Richards has offered compensation to repay the O'Learys for the loss of their car and has offered an apology.

The father-of-one, who works as a croupier, absconded from gardai for four years as he was afraid to go to jail.

Mrs O'Leary told the court that the whole ordeal has affected her badly.

She said she was enraged by the fact that the case "dragged on for four years" because Richards could not be found.

Judge McCartan remanded Richards on continuing bail until next January.

hnews@herald.ie


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