A first time robber was ‘upset’ that CCTV footage of his bungled off-licence robbery appeared on social media where members of his family at home and abroad were able to view it, a court has heard.
At Ennis District Court, Sgt John Burke told the court that Alex Horgan (20) of Tullyglass Cresent, Shannon entered the Carry-Out off licence at Drumgeely in Shannon masked and armed with a knife on October 19 last.
Sgt Burke said that Mr Horgan took two bottles of Buckfast and produced a knife to the cashier before leaving the retail outlet without paying for the items.
Sgt Burke said that the shop-keeper pursued Mr Horgan out of the outlet and retrieved both the bottles and the knife.
In the case, Mr Horgan has pleaded guilty to robbing Jim Moran of two bottles of Buckfast worth €30 at the Carry Out off licence in Drumgeely, Shannon. Mr Horgan has no previous convictions.
Mr Horgan – appearing in court via video link from prison – has been in custody since October 21 after he was refused bail and had been found air-side at Shannon airport before being brought to court.
Solicitor for Mr Horgan, John Casey said that the CCTV of the robbery “unfortunately for Mr Horgan went on social media”.
Mr Casey said as a result of the CCTV footage on social media people knew about the robbery “and he was very upset as his family became aware of it and family outside the country became aware of it”.
Mr Casey said that from viewing the footage it is apparent that the robbery “was ill-planned”.
Mr Casey said that outside the off-licence, Mr Horgan was accosted by another shop customer “and he dropped everything”.
Mr Casey said that Mr Horgan wanted to apologise to the shop owner as Mr Horgan is a local man and a regular at the retail outlet.
Mr Casey said that the reason Mr Horgan committed the robbery “was that he owed money for drugs as is the plight of so many young people around this county in towns and villages”.
Mr Casey said that there is serious addiction with Mr Horgan and acknowledged that it “is a serious offence”
Judge Alec Gabbett said that knife crime – irrespective of robbery – “is one of the most serious matters I will have to deal with in this court”.
He said that “the headline sentence here is nine months. The Probation Report is going to have to be very good.”
Judge Gabbett remanded Mr Horgan in custody to appear at Ennis District Court on December 20th for sentencing and a Probation Report.