Man with stolen rickshaw had been 'reckless and foolhardy'

Paul Rooney has a childhood acquired brain injury

Andrew Phelan

A Dublin man caught pushing a stolen rickshaw near his home had been drinking and was "foolhardy", a court heard.

Paul Rooney (29) did not steal the vehicle but got it from "some kids" who had taken it.

Judge Bryan Smyth gave him the benefit of the Probation Act, leaving him without a conviction.

Rooney, of Railway Street in the north inner city, had pleaded guilty to possession of stolen property.

Gda David Kelly said he was on patrol last September 7 when he came across Rooney.

The accused was walking down the street pushing a rickshaw.

When questioned, Rooney appeared to be intoxicated and had no explanation for having it in his possession.

The rickshaw was seized, and it was established it had been stolen earlier. It was returned to the owner undamaged, and Rooney went to Store Street garda station by appointment.


Rooney was not involved in the theft. He had taken some alcohol on the day, but not enough to be arrested for public drunkenness, his solicitor Tony Collier said.

Some "younger kids" had stolen the rickshaw and Rooney was not involved in that but later "came into possession of it", Mr Collier said. He was reckless and should have known it was stolen. "It was just foolhardiness," he added.

Rooney had previous convictions for vehicle and bicycle theft.

He had an acquired brain injury from a childhood car accident and had impaired cognitive ability as a result.

Mr Collier asked the judge to leave Rooney without convictions given the "unusual, unique facts" of the case.

The judge said it was a case of "recklessness" and there was drink involved.