A 30-year-old man who dragged a grandmother along the ground in attempting to steal her handbag, was jailed for three years at Limerick Circuit Court.
John Coleman, with an address at St John’s Square, pleaded guilty to the attempted robbery of the woman’s handbag as he grabbed the strap after taking her eight-year-old granddaughter’s bag off the ground.
The incident, on June 19, 2010, happened as the woman in her 60s sat on the wall at St John’s Hospital.
Coleman, the court was told, approached and took the child’s bag and then grabbed the grandmother’s, but she refused to leave go and held on to it as she was dragged along the ground.
The woman suffered bruises and grazing to her left arm, shoulder and face.
A passer-by intervened and grabbed hold of the bag, before Coleman fled to an apartment block in St John’s Square.
During the incident, the accused dropped a set of keys into the bag and when gardai arrived, they tried the keys in the door to Coleman’s apartment, and he subsequently invited them in and made full admissions.
Coleman, referred to as well known to gardai, was very apologetic for frightening the woman.
Judge Carroll Moran convicted and sentenced him to four years in prison, and suspended the final year.