A robber who beat a man on the street and was apprehended seconds later by an off-duty garda has been jailed for four years.
Dubliner Kevin Murphy (30) had attacked a man in the city centre, punching and kicking the victim while he was on the ground, and was running away from the scene when he was apprehended by an off-duty garda who happened to be passing by.
Murphy of Mount Olive, Park, Kilbarrack pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to robbery at Aston Place, Temple Bar, Dublin city centre, on June 29, 2020.
His previous convictions include possession of drugs for sale or supply, possession of stolen property and violent behaviour in a garda station.
Detective Garda Chris Fitzgerald told Fiona McGowan BL, prosecuting, that the victim had been drinking with his friends in a park on the date in question and was walking around the Temple Bar area.
Det Gda Fitzgerald said the next thing the man knew he was bleeding, surrounded by people and his phone was missing. He was brought to hospital to treat a cut above his eye, although his phone was returned to him by a garda before he left in an ambulance.
A security guard from a nearby restaurant observed the incident when he looked down the laneway and saw the victim lying on the ground. Murphy stood over the man “beating him” by punching and kicking him.
Murphy fled the scene and was observed running away by an off duty garda member who caught and apprehended him. The garda recovered the victim's stolen phone from the accused's hand.
Det Gda Fitzgerald agreed with Carol Doherty BL, defending, that her client was heavily intoxicated when he was apprehended. He agreed that “a thread of intoxication” runs through the accused's offending.
Ms Doherty said her client began smoking crack and heroin at the age of 28. She said he was homeless after being released from prison for a previous offence.
Counsel said her client is “appalled” at his actions and has engaged with Merchants Quay. She said he has two children and asked the court to give him the opportunity to prove he can remain intoxicant free and “be the family man he wants to be”.
Judge Martin Nolan said this was “a nasty enough robbery”. He noted that the property was recovered and that the accused wants to reform and change himself.
He sentenced Murphy to four years imprisonment.