Teen in balaclava fined €100 over trespass in Dublin apartment building
A BALACLAVA masked youth who was caught trespassing in an apartment building in Dublin has been fined €100.
The 16-year-old boy had pleaded not guilty at the Dublin Children's Court to trespassing in a manner likely to cause fear at Charlotte Quay, on January 25 last.
Judge Hugh O'Donnell heard that the teenager and another man had been disturbed by a garda following reports by residents.
A Garda witness said she saw the teenager “wearing a balaclava” running down stairs in the building. She caught him and he refused to take of his mask which the officer then removed.
The teenager admitted that he had been trespassing but tried to beat the charge by claiming that a door to the building had been open when he entered. “It is not private property if it is open,” the boy told the judge, who did not accept that explanation.
The boy said he had gone there with another man who had gone looking for his sister's boyfriend following an earlier row.
Judge O'Donnell found the boy guilty and heard that he already had seven prior convictions.
Defence counsel Aoife McNickle pleaded for leniency and told the judge that the boy, who was accompanied to his hearing by his mother, had come under the influence of the man who had been with him at the apartment building.
She said the boy had problems in staying away from the man who was described as a negative influence. However the judge was also told that the boy has since stopped associating with the 20-year-old.
The court also heard that the teenager is taking part in a training course and is already on supervised probation for other offences.
Judge O'Donnell fined the teen E100 and said it must be paid within one year otherwise community service will be imposed.