Heroin addict jailed for break-in at solicitor’s office

Break-in: McInerney's Solicitors, Eyre Square

A heroin addict with 62 previous convictions has been sentenced to nine months in prison for trespassing at a solicitor’s office and a further four months for breaking into a car at Woodquay.

Martin Carroll (29), 90 Cluain Riocaird, Headford Road, appeared in custody before Galway District Court where he pleaded guilty to trespassing at McInerney’s solicitors, Eyre Square, on February 2 last and to interfering with a vehicle parked in a private driveway in Woodquay on September 23 last year.

The court heard a female solicitor was upstairs in her office when she heard an office door slam downstairs. The door could only have been opened from the inside. She went to check and found someone had rummaged through her handbag and her phone was missing.

Sergeant Georgina Lohan said Gardai recovered the stolen phone from Carroll at Eglinton Street that evening. The SIM card had been removed and he told them he was on his way to sell it.

A charge of handling the stolen phone was withdrawn by the State following Carroll’s plea to the other charges.

In relation to the offence in Woodquay last September, Detective Bernard McLoughlin responded swiftly to a call at 8.30am and found Carroll rummaging through the boot of a vehicle parked in the driveway of a family home in Woodquay.  He was just about to remove a set of golf clubs from the boot when he was caught. Sergeant Lohan confirmed Carroll had 62 previous convictions for burglaries, thefts, interfering with cars and drug dealing.

Defence solicitor, Sean Acton said his client had been feeding a heroin addiction for the last 12 years but he was now drug-free and attending school while in prison.

Breaking into any office, but especially a solicitor’s office, was a very serious offence, Judge Fahy said, as solicitors’ phones contain private information regarding their clients.

She sentenced Carroll to nine months for that offence and imposed a consecutive four-month sentence for interfering with the car in Woodquay.  She commended Detective McLoughlin for his quick response to the call which averted a theft.

The sentences were backdated to March 7 when Carroll first went into custody in relation to the charges before the court.