A Thurles teenager was given a total of 10 months jail, with the last three months suspended, for a litany of road traffic, thefts, public order, and criminal damage offences in the town and surrounding areas.
Glen Quinlan, who gave an address of 30 Hawthorn Drive, Thurles, pleaded guilty to all matters before Judge Elizabeth MacGrath at Thurles District Court.
Mr Quinlan is currently undergoing a residential treatment course, explained his Solicitor Mr Colin Morrissey, who requested that Quinlan continue to receive treatment while in prison.
Many of the offences were attempts by Quinlan to steal items from cars to feed his drug habit, explained Mr Morrissey.
Quinlan was charged with 11 offences relating to interfering with cars on January 5th this year in Thurles. Quinlan caused criminal damage to two vehicles at Kavanagh Place, Thurles, on January 5, the vehicles belonging to Edwina Butler, and Stephen Browne.
Gardaí were called to the area after reports of a “youth” breaking into cars, said Sgt. Declan O’Carroll. Gardaí went to the scene and stopped Quinlan, as he matched the description of a person who had damaged other vehicles. One of the injured parties did not make a complaint, but had to pay €700 in repairs, heard the Court.
Quinlan was charged with attempting to get into nine vehicles at F&M Motors, Stradavoher, Thurles, on the same day. Quinlan interfered with the cars, but failed to gain entry to them. He “made admissions regarding the criminal damage, but could not recall what happened,” said Sgt. O’Carroll.
In a separate incident, on March 3rd this year in Thurles, Quinlan was observed “staggering” on the footpath, and was extremely intoxicated and “unable to hold himself up”. He became abusive when arrested and used profanities as members of the public were present nearby, said Sgt. O’Carroll. He was arrested and charged with public order offences.
On May 10th this year, Quinlan was observed in Stradavoher, Thurles, attempting to open the door of two vehicles with a door handle. Elaine Murphy observed Quinlan, walk up to and interfere with a stationary vehicle. He “did not have success”, trying to open the door of the car belonging to Paul Gibson. The incident was captured on CCTV.
On May 3 this year, Quinlan took a set of binoculars worth €100 from a car, the property of Elaine Glasheen, at Glasheen’s public house, in Stradavoher, Thurles.
Quinlan was also charged with being threatening and abusive at Railway View, Templemore, on May 20th this year. Gardaí were called to a disturbance. Quinlan became abusive and intoxicated, and he was “aggressive and swearing” at members of the public. He was arrested on an outstanding warrant relating to a breach of bail, said Sgt. O’Carroll.
Quinlan has previous convictions for public order, trespass, theft, and criminal damage.
Solicitor Colin Morrissey said his client is 19 years old. “Unfortunately, he has racked up an astonishing amount of convictions. It’s fair to say that all offending behaviour occurs when he’s intoxicated.” A previous Court had granted him bail to avail of opportunities to address his addiction issues, “but he was unsuccessful, due to his addiction to drugs and drink”. Quinlan was fully cooperative when arrested.
“He is now clean and extremely anxious to deal with his addiction issues. He’s holding his hands up,” added Mr Morrissey. “He did have an opportunity to do that, but breached bail.”
Quinlan is the eldest of four brothers and two sisters, and his first child is due in 3 months.
He left school at 17, and “found himself getting into bother” and that’s where his addiction started. It “snowballed from there.” “In sobriety, he is a very good brother” and the intoxication is “self induced”, said Mr Morrissey.
Judge MacGrath imposed four jail terms on Quinlan for all matters, ranging from 2 to six months, and disqualified him from driving for 2 years. Overall, Quinlan will serve 10 months, of which three months are suspended.
Quinlan was bound to the peace under a Section 99 bond for two years, on his own bail of €200, and directed to engage with the probation services. Judge MacGrath took remaining charges were taken into account.
“We’re trying to give you a chance here,” Judge MacGrath told Quinlan. “This is the last chance you will have to deal with it.”
Separately, Mr Quinlan is accused of entering Matthew Burke House, Gortataggart, Thurles, as a trespasser. Quinlan is accused of taking a Windsor TV, valued at €300, a Pechnika DVD player (€100), a Sky TV Box (€300), numerous CDs (€20), and a TV adaptor (€3). Quinlan is also charged with producing a 4-foot wooden stick during the course of a burglary at Matthew Burke’s House, and with getting into a vehicle during the incident, belonging to Martha O’Flynn.
Those matters were adjourned to August 4th next, while the Book of Evidence is prepared.