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Violent teen mugger given another suspended sentence

CourtsBy Sunday World
The youth must stay out of trouble for the next three and a half years to avoid time in detention
The youth must stay out of trouble for the next three and a half years to avoid time in detention

A DUBLIN youth, who dragged a teenage girl to the ground by her hair when he stole her mobile phone, has been given a nine-month suspended sentence.

The 16-year-old boy, who is in care, appeared at the Dublin Children's Court. He pleaded guilty to the robbery of the teenage girl at Rathsallagh Park, Shankill in south Co. Dublin on June 12th last. 

Judge John O'Connor imposed a nine-month suspended sentence consecutive to a two and a half year suspended sentence the teenager was given recently for an “absolutely savage” robbery. The order means the boy, who cannot be named because he is a minor,  must stay out of trouble for the next three and a half years to avoid both sentences being activated.

The court heard that the girl was dragged to the ground by her hair and suffered cuts to her knee and lips as she had her phone worth €500 stolen.

Judge O'Connor had been furnished with a victim impact statement and a probation report on the teenage defendant, who has repeatedly broken bail conditions.

Earlier, the court had heard that the youth had taken a cocktail of pain killers and other drugs at the time of the robbery. He has one prior criminal conviction, also for robbery, and had been staying in hostel accommodation at the time of the crimes as a result of family problems.

For the robbery of the girl, Judge O'Connor imposed a nine-month term but suspended it for 12 months on condition he is of good behaviour. He also ordered that this was consecutive to the longer suspended sentence which was handed down earlier this month.

The youth had been given a two-and-a-half year suspended sentence from the Circuit Court for taking part in a vicious gang robbery of a 28-year-old Chinese man at Liffey St in Dublin city-centre on July 10th last.

CCTV footage of the incident shows a pack of teenagers surrounding the man who was repeatedly punched, kicked and kneed. They ripped his shirt ripped off him before he was pulled him to the ground where the gang rained kicks to his head and body. 

The 28-year-old could be seen trying to protect himself and struggled back on to his feet while the youths had him surrounded and were kicking and punching him. A final blow to the back his head saw him knocked out, flat on his back, lying motionless as his phone was stolen, and his shoes were then taken off his feet by the youths who then fled.

Judge O'Connor said: “I have seen that video on a number of occasions and each time I am equally shocked.”

That victim suffered cuts and swelling to his face, a lump on his head, bruising on his legs and severe bruising on chest. Three other youths have been given a suspended sentence for that robbery while one 18-year-old male was detained for 10 months and a 15-year-old girl was also given a three-month custodial sentence for her role.

Judge John O'Connor had  described that incident as “absolutely savage” and had held that the gang robbery case was too serious to be dealt with in the juvenile court.