A 10-month suspended jail term was imposed on an indecisive raider who pulled out a knife at an off-licence saying “this is a robbery” but quickly clarified that it was not a robbery after all.
Judge Olann Kelleher had adjourned sentencing of Jamie Condon for two months until yesterday to see how he would behave in the interim.
Sergeant Gearóid Davis said Condon, aged 29, from 4 Rock Cottages, Commons Rd, Cork, had not come to the adverse attention of gardaí since the adjournment.
Judge Kelleher then imposed the 10-month suspended jail term on Condon, who admitted the attempted robbery at O’Donovan’s off-licence in Blackpool at 8.30pm on January 31, 2018.
As he imposed the suspended sentence, Judge Kelleher noted that the member of staff on duty on the night knew Condon from coming in and out of the premises.
Sgt Davis said that, on that evening, a lone male entered O’Donovan’s on Thomas Davis St, Blackpool. He had his face covered with a neck-warmer.
“He said ‘this is a robbery’, but the shop assistance informed the man that he recognised him,” said Sgt Davis.
At that stage, the suspect pulled the neck-warmer down off his face and said it was not a robbery and he was only joking and he left the premises.
A week later, on February 6, the defendant was arrested in relation to the incident and admitted that was him who entered the off-licence with the knife.
He said at the time that his memory of the incident was vague and that it was not his intention to carry out a robbery but he could not explain his behaviour.
Donal Daly, defence solicitor, said that in the period of more than a year since the incident had occurred, Condon had taken significant steps to turn his life around.
This included a 28-day rehabilitation programme followed by a five-month period in a residential programme in Bruree, Co Limerick.
“He is off alcohol and all substances and is in full-time employment,” said Mr Daly.
He also wrote a letter of apology to the member of staff who was present at the time.