'sentimental' | 

Thief who stole gold watch after shop owner left it on table jailed for seven months

Gary Riordan also hurled abuse at a member of the public who saved him from a canal he'd entered while drunk

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Andrew Phelan

A MAN who stole a gold watch of "huge sentimental value" to a shop worker has been jailed for seven months.

Gary Riordan (32) took the watch when the owner left it on a counter.

He also hurled abuse at a member of the public who rescued him from a canal where he was "struggling" in the water while drunk.

Judge Bryan Smyth imposed consecutive sentences at Dublin District Court.

Riordan, of no fixed address, pleaded guilty to theft, public order and other charges.

The court heard that on July 12, 2019, he went into Active Life pharmacy on Talbot Street and stole a gold watch, which a staff member had left on a counter. It was worth €250 but was also of "huge sentimental value" to the victim.

Separately, gardaí were called to the Royal Canal in Cabra on July 6, 2020, when it was reported a man was struggling to swim in the water.

When gardaí arrived, the accused was on the canal bank, having been taken out by a member of the public.

He was clearly intoxicated and became abusive to the garda and the member of the public who had helped him out of the water. He was brought to hospital as a precaution.

In other incidents, he snatched a €1,200 phone from a man's hand and stole a bicycle from outside a store.

One of the accused's children had been in hospital at the time, this "broke his heart" and he "hit the bottle in a very bad way", his defence solicitor said.

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