Teen escapes conviction over cocaine-fuelled attack

A youth, who took cocaine then burgled a woman’s home and attacked her boyfriend, escaped a criminal conviction today and was let off with a warning.

A youth, who took cocaine then burgled a woman’s home and attacked her boyfriend, escaped a criminal conviction today and was let off with a warning.

The 17-year-old had pleaded guilty at the Children’s Court to burglary of a house in Ballymun, in Dublin, and assault causing harm, which occurred last year.

Garda Fiona Divilly had told the court that the woman had caught the teenager in her home.

The teen left and she explained what had happened to her boyfriend, who went out and attempted to remonstrate with the teenager.

However the teenager "picked up a pole and struck him over his head" a number of times.

The man, who is in his twenties suffered head injuries, which resulted in five stitches, but made a full recovery.

The youth’s counsel said the teen "had been drinking heavily on the day of the incident and took drugs for the very first time".

"He took cocaine and accepts it contributed to his behaviour and was directly linked to what happened," counsel said.

In pleas for leniency the court was told the teen, who is taking part in a training course, had co-operated with the Probation Service to address his offending behaviour.

Judge McMahon also heard the youth had no prior convictions and the Probation Service report had recommended applying the Probation Offenders’ Act.

He agreed with the recommendation and released the teenager, who was accompanied to court by his mother, without a recorded criminal conviction.

The youth was warned however that if he committed a further offence he would not be dealt with in the same way again.

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