Man avoids jail after he broke into a car dealership drunk and stole a car

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By Brion Hoban

A man who broke into a car dealership while drunk and later crashed a stolen car has been given a two-year suspended sentence.

David Morgan (30) of Tymonville Lawns, Tallght, pleaded guilty at Dublin Circuit Criminal Court to burglary, unlawfully taking a vehicle and damaging property at LPD Cars & Commercials, Greenhills Road, Tallaght, on September 3, 2018.

Morgan also pleaded guilty to refusing to give a sample at Tallaght Garda Station and driving without insurance at Homelawn Avenue, Tallaght, both also on September 3, 2018.

Passing sentence today, Judge Melanie Greally noted that Morgan had been placed on a probation bond after evidence was first heard in the case in January 2020.

She noted from a series of reports from the Probation Service that Morgan “engaged satisfactorily with them” and he is now expected to conclude working with the service in 2022.

“He has not come to any garda attention and appears to be managing his addiction,” Judge Greally said before she added that Morgan had “followed through on his expression to address his addictions”.

Judge Greally sentenced Morgan to two years in prison which she suspended in full having taken into account his admissions, remorse and an apology.

She also noted that he had paid compensation “as a concrete expression of his remorse” referring to the fact that Morgan has since paid the dealership €1,700 for the damage he caused.

The sentence was suspended on condition that Morgan keep the peace and be of good behaviour for two years.

At an earlier sentencing hearing, Garda Michael Brislane told Grainne O’Neill BL, prosecuting, that on the date in question he was on mobile patrol when he observed the accused driving at high speed on Homelawn Avenue.

Gda Brislane said the accused mounted the curb and crashed into two parked cars. He fled the scene on foot and was pursued by gardaí who were able to restrain him.

Morgan resisted arrest and became “volatile”. While in custody he refused to give a sample of his blood or urine, saying “I’m not fucking giving you anything”.

Gardaí also discovered three sets of car keys in the pocket of Morgan’s jacket.

Paul Dargan, the proprietor of LBD Cars & Commercials, reported to gardaí two cars were missing from his dealership. He reported that the steel grill had been removed from a portacabin on the premises and the glass had been smashed.

In interview, Morgan admitted he had been out drinking and was on his way home to his mother when he went into the car dealership on Greenhills Road.

“He said he sat in 20 cars that were unlocked and drove away in one of them.

Gda Brislane agreed with George Burns BL, defending, that his client was intoxicated during the offences and that he was listening to radios on high volumes in the 20 cars.

He agreed that Morgan said he did not realise he had the keys on him and that he had taken the jacket.

Mr Burns said his client’s previous convictions all relate to issues with alcohol and substance abuse. He said Morgan paid €1,700 to the garage in the aftermath of these offences.

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