Wednesday 18 September 2019

'You face the Paddywagon' - jail threat to GAA captain who stole from team

Drugged-up player rummaged through bags in dressing room after telling coach he felt sick

Barry Guinnane leaving Ennis District Court
Barry Guinnane leaving Ennis District Court

Gordon Deegan

A judge has warned a captain of a GAA team, who rummaged through the belongings of his own team-mates at training and made off with two iPhones worth €900, that he faces the "Paddywagon" if he steps out of line again.

Judge Patrick Durcan made the comment at Ennis District Court yesterday when telling Barry Guinnane (32) to comply with all the requirements of the Probation Service over the next 12 months.

The judge told him that under no circumstances was he to miss an appointment with the service. "Any appointment they make, you keep. I don't do 'sick', I don't do 'sore head', I don't do 'bad back', I don't do 'sore foot'. I don't do those things," Judge Durcan said.

Guinnane pleaded guilty to the thefts in April of this year during a training session at the club. He was captain of Clarecastle GAA club's football team at the time of the thefts but is now no longer part of the team.

Solicitor for Guinnane, John Casey, said drugs were his client's problem and he smoked some "weed" and took some Xanax tablets before attending training on April 25. Inspector Tom Kennedy had previously told the court after 30 minutes of training on the night, Guinnane told his coach he was feeling unwell and left the pitch.

He returned to the changing room where he rummaged through the belongings of five or six team-mates and stole an iPhone 6 worth €500 from Darragh Holland and another iPhone from Colin Brigdale.

Insp Kennedy said gardaí were alerted after the players returned and found their iPhones had been stolen.

He said gardaí tracked down Guinnane at his home, recovered the two phones and said Guinnane "was forthcoming about what happened, was sorry he did it and that it was the wrong thing to do".

Mr Casey said Guinnane took the phones to pay off drug debts.

Judge Durcan remanded Guinnane on bail to October 3 next year.

Irish Independent

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