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A TEENAGER, who stole a pair of right-footed runners which came in different sizes, has been spared a custodial sentence.

A TEENAGER, who stole a pair of right-footed runners which came in different sizes, has been spared a custodial sentence.

The boy, 16, pleaded guilty to theft of Nike runners worth €35 during a botched shoplifting attempt at Lifestyle Sports, in the Omni shopping-centre in north Dublin, on the evening of October 29 last.

His case at the Dublin Children's Court had been adjourned until yesterday when a pre-sentence probation report was furnished to Judge John O'Connor.

Judge O'Connor ordered that the boy, who was accompanied to court by his lawyer and a family member, was to be bound to the peace for one year.

The teenager must not re-offend in that time otherwise he could be brought back to court and face a possible custodial sentence.

Garda Emily Carr had told the court an off-duty garda had spotted the teenager, "pick up runners from a display on the front window".

Judge O'Connor was told Gda Carr was notified and came the scene where she watched CCTV footage of the theft which led to the boy's arrest. The Nike runners were recovered and returned to the store in a saleable condition, said Gda Carr.

"They were two right feet runners, in two odd sizes," she had also said..

The boy's solicitor Gareth Noble confirmed that one of the runners was a size three and the other was the next size up. He had told Judge O'Connor that his client, who cannot be identified, could not have benefited from the theft.

Mr Noble said the teenager, who was supported in court by his father, was in a rut. "He does not have a lot of structure and routine to his day", the lawyer had said.

The boy has no prior criminal convictions recorded against him but was already known to the Probation Service; Mr Noble had suggested they "may well be able to help him get out of the rut he is in at the moment."


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