A MOTHER of two pleaded guilty in a Limerick court to two charges of assault and 18 charges of theft, but said that a pharmacy assistant was lying when she said that the woman had headbutted her.
But Judge Patricia Harney said there was “a problem” with believing Lyndsey Barry (21), of 2 Byrne Avenue, Prospect, as “you have a reputation for dishonesty”.
Ms Byrne pleaded guilty to charges of stealing goods from a sports shop, supermarkets, and a book shop in Limerick to the value of more than €3,600.
The District Court in Mulgrave Street heard that only a fraction of the stolen goods had been recovered.
The Judge read aloud to the court victim impact statements from two people who were assaulted by Ms Barry.
In one case, the Judge said she had “a lot of sympathy” for a woman who wrote about how she had followed Ms Barry from a pharmacy where she had stolen items, asking her to return them.
She said Ms Barry started “screaming that I was trying to rob her .. she headbutted me in the nose. I was shocked and embarrassed. My nose was bleeding and was swollen, bruised and sore”
“My daughter works with me in the pharmacy and I was worried that she would come back and assault her.”
In a separate impact statement, a security guard at the Crescent Shopping Centre outlined how Ms Barry walked past him out of a store without paying for goods she had in her bag.
“I followed her and tried to get the goods back. She punched me in the neck and chest. I didn’t see those punches coming,” Judge Harney read aloud from the security guard’s statement.
Ms Barry apologised for her behaviour towards the security guard but insisted that she had not headbutted the woman.
The court was told Ms Barry has 48 previous convictions. Her solicitor, John Herbert, told the court that she “has a drug habit. She has had many traumatic events in her life. There is an element of peer pressure in all this – she may not have been the beneficiary of the proceeds of all of this.”
Mr Herbert said that Ms Barry has two children “and worries about being a good role model for them”.
Judge Harney noted that the assaults were “an escalation in her offending” and jailed Ms Barry for a total of 30 weeks and two days on the theft offences and five months for the two assaults.