Cheeky burglar who tried to steal till gets seven months

A cheeky burglar who tried to steal a till from a petrol station during the afternoon and pried open a locker in a hotel stealing a valuable watch was given an extra seven months in jail.

Martin Thomas Barrett (31 ) with an address at The Meadows, Ballybrit, appeared before Judge Mary Fahy at Galway District Court on Monday charged with a number of road traffic offences, failing to give a name, two counts of burglary, and failing to appear in court.

Inspector Ernie White told the court that on March 14, 2010 at 12.30pm the defendant entered the Topaz petrol station on the Barna Road and put his hand in over the counter and tried to take the till. When this failed he stole a wallet belonging to a staff member which contained €200 cash. On September 11, 2009, Barrett went into the male changing rooms at the Ardilaun Hotel in Taylors Hill. He proceeded to open a locker by using a screw driver and stole an Omega watch, worth €1,800, and €40 cash. The property was not recovered.

Barrett got into trouble again on March 10, 2010, at Dun Leinn, Monivea Road, where he was found to be arguing with his wife. When gardai arrived he was asked to leave the area but refused and gave a false name.

There was also a number of road traffic offences against Barrett relating to September 8, 2009, at Castlepark, Ballybane, where the defendant’s vehicle was stopped and he was found to be driving without insurance and a driving licence, he failed to produce these documents, and also he had no road tax and no disc displayed. Barrett also gave gardai the wrong name of Thomas Sweeney.

The court heard that Barrett is currently serving 17 months in jail for other offences and that he has 20 previous convictions, many for road traffic offences.

“This man seems to think he can do what he likes... going into a locker room and taking a watch worth €1,800. It beggers belief. The cheek of this man. He has no remorse,” said Judge Fahy.

Defence solicitor Olivia Traynor said that her client has serious drug addiction problems and that after he was arrested, following the Topaz incident, he made full admissions.

After hearing the evidence Judge Fahy convicted Barrett and imposed a total of seven months in jail, to be served on lawful termination of sentence already being served, and disqualified him from driving for seven years.

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