A teenage boy who held a man while three accomplices took turns punching him during a vicious mugging on Dublin's Harcourt Street has been given a 12-month sentence.
The boy, aged 16, pleaded guilty at the Dublin Children's Court to the robbery of the man, who is in his thirties, in the early hours of July 16 last.
Judge John O'Connor described the teen's role in the mugging as “complete thuggery”.
Detective Garda Niall O'Reilly told the court the boy, then aged 15, was part of a group of four males.
He held the victim, “while the other three took turns in punching the injured party in the face”.
The man received five or six punches and was knocked to the ground.
He suffered a fractured nose which required surgery.
His €700 mobile phone and wallet containing €50 were taken.
CCTV footage was shown of the man being stopped and held by the teen while the accomplices swung punches at him before knocking him out on the street.
The Director of Public Prosecutions had recommended sending the case forward to the circuit court which has tougher sentencing powers.
However, following submissions from defence barrister Beatrice Vance, who cited the teen's young age and guilty plea, Judge O'Connor accepted jurisdiction for the case to remain in the Children's Court.
Detective Garda O'Reilly agreed with Ms Vance the teenager had met the other members of his group shortly before the incident.
He told the court he did not think the boy had planned it until he met the others who wore their hoods up throughout the incident.
He also accepted that the boy had not punched the man but he had put his hand around the victim.
The court was told the man “cannot recall much due to concussion”.
The teen was identified from CCTV.
Ms Vance asked the court to note that the boy did not seem to be the ringleader.
He has been in custody on remand since July and has realised the serious consequences of an assault like this.
It was lucky the victim's injuries were not much more severe, counsel had said.
The teenager also admitted stealing a man's €300 wedding ring and €50 from a car parked at a sports club in Sandymount, Dublin on July 1 last.
He then burgled the club's bar.
He also used a stolen bank card on November 23, 2017.
Judge O'Connor described the robbery on Harcourt Street as “complete thuggery” and he remarked that the teenager “was right in the middle of it”.
The boy, who was accompanied to court by his mother, had his sentence backdated by four months to take into account time already served by him on remand.