A TEENAGER who was kicked out of home after it was "shot up" has been given a four-month suspended sentence after he was caught trespassing on the roof of a convenience store
A court heard how Sean Dowdall (19) had been put out by his mother because his activities had led to the family home being targeted in a gun attack.
Dowdall maintained that he was being blamed for "taking things from people" when the shooting happened.
He said he was homeless and had no money when he was caught trying to take lead from the shop roof.
Judge Ann Watkin suspended the sentence for a year at Dublin District Court after hearing he was no longer in the same "peer group".
Dowdall, with an address at Rutland Grove, Dublin 12, pleaded guilty to trespassing at Centra, Harold's Cross Road, on June 12 last year.
Judge Watkin had adjourned the case for the preparation of a pre-sentence probation report, saying she wanted to know "the full story".
However, when the case came back before the court, she was told the report did not address this issue.
Judge Watkin noted that Dowdall had two previous convictions for interfering with people's property, but agreed to suspend the sentence.
The court had previously heard that the shop was open at the time and the accused accessed the roof from a lane.
There was lead on the roof and, when caught, he admitted he was trying to take it off.
Dowdall had a falling-out with his mother, who had asked him to leave the family home, his barrister Nicola Cox said.
He was now living with a friend temporarily and had made contact with the homeless services.
His mother would not have him back.
"He wasn't in receipt of any funds and he was desperate for money," Ms Cox said. "He knows he can't act in this manner."
Dowdall told the judge: "My house was shot at a couple of months ago. It was because of me. I was getting blamed for taking things from people."
The prosecuting garda said he did not know anything about this, but there was an investigation taking place "regarding Mr Dowdall".
"This is very serious stuff," Judge Watkin said of the defendant's remarks.