A 21-year-old man who smashed a car window on the way home from a Dundalk FC soccer match has been convicted at Dundalk Court.
Michael Keaney, Clann Chullainn Park denied causing the damage at Castletown on March 10 2012. He admitted causing damage at the Cube Bar, Earl Street on March 13 2011.
Judge William Hamill was told that Gardai on patrol in Castletown Road were turning right from Legion Avenue when they said they saw a man kicked the passenger window of the vehicle.
He was wearing a Dundalk FC shirt and he was then arrested. Charges of alleged criminal damage and public disorder followed.
He became unwell while at the Garda station and an ambulance was called, the court heard. Damage to the car was estimated at e200.
Barrister James Egan, defending, said that defendant believed he had been wrongly targeted by Gardai.
The Gardai said they had seen defendant breaking the window and approached him immediately.
Defendant said in evidence he had been at a footmall match at Oriel Park and had gone to a relation’s house. He said he was leaving the house when a Garda car stopped and Gardai questioned him. He said he had then noticed a car with a smashed window behind him.
He said the car had actually passed him and turned around and come back to him.
He was the only person there and that was “the only thing” he could think of.
He told the judge he knew for certain he had not caused the damage.
Mr Egan claimed that his client was “in the wrong place at the wrong time”.
The judge said he was satisfied that he should convict the defendant of criminal damage.
The court was also told of an incident at Cube Bar where Gardai were told of alleged criminal damage and Kearney was identified on CCTV. The damage was e290.
Mr Egan said that in relation to this incident his client was at a birthday party. One of his friends had got involved with a bouncer and he stepped in. He thought the matter would be sorted out but it was not.
His client had not been in trouble since this incident and he was already due to perform 100 hours community service.
Judge Wlliam Hamill said he would not guarantee allowing Kearney to do community service if he did not come up with compensation for the damage.
He put the case back to March 6.