Jail for man who burgled house and stole car after escaping custody

by Padraig Conlon

A man who burgled a house and stole a car after escaping from custody has been jailed for four years.

Michael Connors (26) of Marlfield Crescent, Tallaght, Dublin pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to burglary at Commons Road, Shankill, on April 21, 2018.

He also pleaded guilty to unlawful use of a vehicle at Whitehall Road, Dublin 12, on April 22, 2018.

Judge Elma Sheahan sentenced him to four and a half years imprisonment, but suspended the final six months of the sentence on strict conditions.

The court heard that while unlawfully at large from custody, Connors broke into a house and stole the keys for a car. He did not come into contact with the son of the owner of the house who was in the address at that time.

Connors did €500 of damage to a gate as he attempted to exit the property. He has 40 previous convictions, including 13 previous convictions for burglary.

He previously pleaded guilty to escaping custody on November 10, 2017 and on April 20, 2018.

The court heard that while being treated for a bitten ear at Tallaght Hospital, Connors slipped his handcuffs and fled from prison officers.

Connors escaped from custody again a few months later when he climbed over a wall at Tallaght Garda Station and ran.

In January, last, Judge Melanie Greally suspended the last year of a five year sentence. She also disqualified him from driving for six years.

Yesterday Judge Sheahan said the aggravating factors in the case were the seriousness of the offence, his previous convictions for burglary and that the offences were committed while the accused was at large from lawful custody.

She said the mitigating factors were his early plea of guilty, his “sad and tragic upbringing”, his drug addiction and his efforts to detox, his having two young children and his remorse.

Judge Sheahan said the court might have suspended more than the final six months of the sentence but for the fact that he had received suspended sentences in the past and did not avail of the opportunity.

She said it appeared to the court that the accused had no regard for the level of criminality he engaged in.

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