Man went on burglary spree at six nearby premises after being released from custody at garda station

By Aoife Nic Ardghail

A man who had just been released from a garda station burgled six nearby buildings and left behind blood, fingerprints and documents bearing the false name he gave gardai, a court has heard, reports Aoife Nic Ardghail.

Aaron Dawson (23) had been arrested for a public order offence and had given gardai a false name and address.

Dublin Criminal Courts of Justice 2 October 2016

He was released from Swords Garda Station with charge sheets bearing these fake details and he then committed burglaries on adjacent buildings about 250 metres away.

Dawson, of Cushlawn Drive, Tallaght, came to Dublin Circuit Criminal Court on signed pleas of guilty to eight charges of burglary and criminal damage at Main Street, Swords, Dublin, on July 26, 2017.

He has 43 previous convictions, including six burglaries, one aggravated burglary, and handling stolen property.

Judge Melanie Greally imposed a three-year sentence with two suspended, to run consecutive to a jail term he is currently serving.

Detective Garda Colin McKiernan told Diarmuid Collins BL, prosecuting, that Dawson has since been dealt with in the District Court for the public order and giving a false name offences.

He said Dawson committed the burglaries in the hour-and-a-half after he had been released from custody at Swords Garda Station.

These premises included Dillons Hair Salon, Zest, Abbey Travel, Havana Therapy and Pink Elephant Thai Restaurant.

Det Garda McKiernan said Dawson left his blood at the restaurant, fingerprints at Dillons Hair Salon and the charge sheets from the garda station at Zest. There was also CCTV evidence in the case.

The court heard Dawson had been on bail for the public order matter and from an earlier handling stolen property charge.

He damaged the doors on all the premises and took various items, including an iPad and watch, as well as cash.

When arrested and interviewed, Dawson identified himself on CCTV showing some of the incidents and told gardai he had been “bad on drink” at the time. He said he drank up to two bottles of whiskey per day.

Det Garda McKiernan agreed with Pieter Le Vert BL, defending, that his client had been “sloppy”.

The detective agreed with Mr Le Vert’s suggestion that “no planning had gone into this, to put it mildly, no disguise or anything like that, it’s sloppy.” He further agreed that Dawson had been co-operative in the investigation.

Mr Le Vert submitted that nobody else in Dawson’s family had ever been in trouble with the law. He said his client developed a drug addiction in his teens but managed to rehabilitate himself, even while back in custody.

Counsel said Dawson spent time working as a security guard until a family situation arose and caused him to start drinking heavily. This drinking led to the offending.

He asked the judge to take into account his client’s young age, his progress in prison, his admissions and that the spree happened in one night.

Judge Greally ordered that Dawson undergo 12 months supervision with the Probation Service post release.

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