A SINGLE father caught trying to break into a house while the residents were at home told a "pack of lies" when he claimed he was at home minding his child at the time, a judge said.
Thomas Redmond was jailed for six months for trespassing at the south inner city house, where the tenant caught him trying to force the door open and kicking it.
The man, who had been disturbed from working on his PhD in the house at the time, saw Redmond peering in the letterbox and then in his front window and later identified him to gardai.
Redmond (25), a part-time roofer, of Donore Terrace, Dublin 8, had insisted he was in his own home at the time. He denied a charge of trespassing at nearby Ingram Road on November 19 last year.
Dublin District Court heard that resident Andrew Moore was at home with his wife at 4pm when he heard what sounded like a key in the front door.
When he confirmed his wife was in the house, he realised someone must be trying to force the door open.
Redmond started kicking the door and Mr Moore shouted out, asking what he was doing. Redmond replied that he was "looking for a Polish person called Olaf".
Redmond opened up the letterbox and looked inside. Mr Moore then pulled back the front window curtain and saw the accused looking in. Redmond smiled at him before cycling away.
Mr Moore gave gardai a description and was asked to identify the culprit from a photo montage.
He picked out the defendant's photo and gardai asked him to carry out an informal identification by coming to the Criminal Courts of Justice, where he saw Redmond in the public area.
Mr Moore followed Redmond to a nearby bookmakers where he confirmed the identification.
The court heard Redmond had been asked to take part in a formal identity parade but declined, as was his right.
In evidence, Redmond told the court he was at home all day minding his son after picking him up from school at around 12pm.
His sister Melissa also gave evidence that she was with him at the time.
Explaining why he did not take part in an identity parade, he said: "I didn't want to put myself in a position where I would be falsely identified."
"I have observed Mr Redmond and his demeanour and I am satisfied he has been telling a pack of lies," the judge said.
After hearing the accused had previous convictions for theft, the judge sentenced him, fixing recognisances in the event of an appeal.