Taunting gardai to chase you if they can is a rather stupid idea especially if one of them is a keen sportsman, as a red-faced and slow footed Mayo man found out.
At Galway District Court his week, Stephen Irwin (26 ) with an address at 48 Abbeytown, Crossmolina, Mayo, pleaded guilty to being intoxicated in a public place and threatening and abusive behaviour at Dangan Sports Complex on March 8, 2010.
Inspector Mick Coppinger told the court that at 5.35pm a group of youths who were drinking in a field were directed by gardai to move on. However, the inspector said that when alcohol was confiscated the defendant “taunted gardai that they couldn’t catch him”. Irwin was secured in the patrol van but attempted to flee the scene by running away.
“But he wasn’t as fast as Garda [David] Clarke. He didn’t recognise the Mayo goalkeeper,” quibbed Inspector Coppinger.
“He’s old enough to have a bit of sense,” Judge Mary Fahy told defence solicitor Ian Foley who then explained that his client, who has 11 previous convicitons, is unemployed.
“It’s just a bit rich that a defendant who has 11 previous would be trying to take on gardai. What was he doing with young students,” asked Judge Fahy. Mr Foley said that it had been Rag Week at the time and a friend of his client had got into trouble with the gardai.
Irwin was remanded on continuing bail to appear again on October 11 to allow time for the preparation of a community service report. If deemed suitable Irwin is to complete 130 hours of community service or two months jail in lieu.