Judge 'sick of looking' at teen on string of charges

A youth facing a string of public order, motoring and criminal damage charges was placed under house arrest today.

At the Dublin Children’s Court, Judge Clare Leonard granted bail to the teenage boy (aged 17) who had been remanded in custody last week.

However, she said he would be under “house arrest” and stipulated that he can only leave his home to go to his training course and when he is in the company of his mother, his aunt or two of his older siblings.

The north Dublin teen's bail had been revoked earlier after the court heard he was arrested taking part in a theft along with two males, he had been banned from associating with previously in the proceedings.

He was already awaiting sentencing for public order, motoring and criminal damage charges offences committed last year.

The court heard that the boy had not cooperated with the Probation Service who had given him “every chance” to address his offending.

Judge Leonard said the teenager, who was accompanied, to his case by his mother, had been “wasting everyone's time” by not following a Probation Service plan to divert him from crime and he had been arrested in north Dublin on February 6 last for stealing property from a van.

The assistance offered by the Probation Service involved addiction counselling, a place on a training course and a mentoring project to encourage him to take part in pro-social activities.

The teenager, who was accompanied to his case by his mother, had not been attending his training course even though a probation officer had been available to collect him and bring him there.

Judge Leonard said there had been “report upon report upon report” and he was “still arrested in the Naul at a van that the side was cut out of.”

There was also a new charge for shoplifting, which allegedly took place last November.

Counsel defending said his client was seeking a chance to co-operate with the Probation Service, but the judge replied: “Why should we believe him now when he has not done it before?

“I am sick of looking at him and I suppose his mother is fed up coming in here, she is holding down two jobs,” said Judge Leonard.

She also said the Probation Service “should not have to run after him like nannies”.

She agreed to grant bail but specified that the teen would not be allowed out in public unless he was at his training course, or in the company of a responsible adult which she said included his mother, an aunt or two of his adult brothers.

Judge Leonard said it was a condition of his bail to go to his training course and his attendance record will be inspected later. She also ordered him to attend appointments with his Probation Officer and said that if there was a single breach of his conditions he was to be arrested and his bail would be revoked.

The case was adjourned until March.

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