Friday 23 February 2018

Gardaí chased man out of shop after raid with imitation gun, court hears

The Centra convenience shop on Coultry Road, Ballymun
The Centra convenience shop on Coultry Road, Ballymun

Tom Tuite

A 29-year-old man was arrested for an armed raid at a shop after being chased out of the premises by two gardaí, a court has heard.

Patrick Dunne, from St Jarlath Road, Cabra, was arrested following a robbery at a Centra shop at Coultry Road in Ballymun, in Dublin, on Tuesday evening. He was held overnight and brought to appear before Judge Miriam Malone at Dublin District Court yesterday, charged with robbery.

Garda Ronan D'Arcy told the court the accused made no reply when he was charged. He objected to bail, citing the seriousness of the offence.

He told the court it was alleged the accused entered the shop at 7.10pm on Tuesday and "produced an imitation firearm, threatened staff and stole €885 in cash".

Gda D'Arcy said he and a colleague were at the rear of the shop in relation to a separate enquiry while the robbery was occurring.

Gardaí pursued the accused on foot and arrested him in the rear garden of a house on Coultry Drive at 7.20pm, the court heard. The garda said Mr Dunne was in possession of a plastic bag which he had handed to the shop assistant to fill with cash.

Gda D'Arcy said the shop had been busy at the time of the alleged robbery and there was a large number of teenagers congregated outside.

Dressed in a grey tracksuit and runners, Mr Dunne did not address the court and spoke only to his solicitor Colleen Gildernew, who applied for bail.

She asked the court to note that her client had been affected by a number of bereavements. She said he had helped nurse a close friend suffering from cancer who died earlier this week. He would like to be able to go to the funeral which is taking place today, she said.

His father had also died a month ago, the court heard. She said that he had been living in Santry in a hostel, but would be able to return to his family home and would abide by any bail terms.

Ms Gildernew said Mr Dunne came from a close and supportive family who had concerns about his mental health. Mr Dunne has not yet indicated how he will plead to the charge.

Judge Malone refused bail and remanded him in custody to appear again next Tuesday. Three of his visibly upset sisters attended the hearing, and the judge allowed them give a religious medal to Mr Dunne before he was escorted from the courtroom.

Legal aid was granted.

Irish Independent

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