A 15-year-old youth facing charges for a spate of burglaries in Letterkenny has had his bail revoked.

The boy, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was brought before a special sitting of Letterkenny District Court this afternoon.

Last month, the teenager was bailed with the strict conditions that he reside at an address given to Gardaí, that he stay out of retail premises in Letterkenny, that he obey a 9pm-9am curfew, when he is in Letterkenny town that he be accompanied by one of three named adults and that he commit no further offence.

Gardaí are awaiting direction from the Director of Prosecution on some charges while others are awaiting clarification form the juvenile office.

Among the charges facing the boy include a spate of burglaries in Letterkenny in September at HD Beauty Rooms, Lower Main Street, International Hair Styles, Oliver Plunkett Road, Letterkenny and Cooney’s Home & Garden, Letterkenny.

Detective Garda Frank McDaid gave evidence that the youth – who was accompanied by his mother to court – had been found in breach of bail conditions three times in the last week.

On December 30, the teenager was arrested by Gardaí after being found intoxicated at 4.40am.

On December 31 at 9pm, the youth was spotted at Oliver Plunkett Road and directed to go home by Gardaí, but he was later observed returning.

At 12.05 on January 5, the boy was observed at Lower Main Street, Letterkenny, in the company of three other people.

Upon being directed by Detective Garda McDaid to return home, the youth said is mother was at NowDoc.

Solicitor Mr Rory O”Brien said that his mother had taken another woman to NowDoc at the time in question.

Regarding the other two incidents, Mr O’Brien said there was ‘no contest’.

On Monday, Judge Paul Kelly directed that Tusla be involved in the case after he heard the youth missed a series of appointments with the probation service. At the time, Judge Kelly said the boy was ‘on a very tight leash’.

Mr O’Brien said: “Clearly he is in breach, of that there is no dispute. There is no doubt that he has placed himself at liberty and is in a wholly precarious position.

“The previous two incidents were clearly not excusable, but they occurred prior to Monday’s comments and I would ask the court to give him a chance.”

Judge Paul Kelly said that no-one had made the youth leave home while he was aware he was under a court-imposed curfew.

“He is still a 15-year-old child and the incident this week was not of his making – he is not directly responsible,” Mr O’Brien said. “There was a reasonable excuse as to how he found himself there.”

Judge Kelly noted that the boy’s mother was a surety to his bail.

Mr O’Brien said there was an issue with an ongoing delay to the matters which are before the court and are now five months old..

Judge Kelly said he was revoking bail for the boy and said: “I don’t believe there are any conditions that I will impose that will ensure compliance.

“He was granted bail here after a lengthy discussion on December 1. There was a very strenuous bail objection.“

Judge Kelly said that it had been with ‘some reluctance’ that he initially granted bail.

He said: “There were clear and specific conditions and he made all sorts of assurances. There is no mystery or nothing difficult about the bail conditions. The reason for them is crystal clear.”

The youth was remanded to appear via video link from custody at Oberstown Children’s Detention Campus at Monday’s sitting of the court.


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