A 22 year old local man who assaulted a teenager during a mugging was subsequently identified by gardai as he was carrying a tube of Pringles crisps at the time, Dundalk Circuit Court heard last week.
The court was told Keith Hughes with an address at Cox’s Demesne, Dundalk had bought them in Tesco, shortly before the incident on the grounds of Dundalk Shopping Centre on the 4th of August last year.
The court heard last Tuesday that the injured party was one of two teenagers who had been to McDonald’s. They’d walked through the shopping centre and were heading towards Lidl on the Avenue Road, when they were approached by a man with a scar on his face wearing grey clothes.
He asked for a mobile phone to ring a taxi and grabbed it from the 14 year old’s hand before going towards the 16 year old and trying to grab his phone as well.
He claimed he had a knife and repeated the demand - before he punched the older teen full force to his left cheek.
The court was told the assailant was carrying a pink tube of Pringles crisps. Keith Hughes was subsequently identified on CCTV while staff in Tesco could confirm he had bought such an item shortly before the incident.
The court heard the accused had 52 previous convictions, but this was the first time he found himself before the Circuit Court.
The Defence barister said his client had a difficult upbringing and has been in one institution or another since he was 14.
The investigating garda said the defendant has a problem with alcohol and tablets.
He confirmed that after the accused was arrested a doctor had to be called and he could not be interviewed until the next morning, as he was extremely aggressive, and it was suspected he had taken a combination of alcohol and tablets.
The court also heard no knife was ever produced although a threat was made of one.
Judge Michael O’Shea imposed a three year sentence for assault causing harm, back-dated to the defendant’s arrest on the fourth of August last.
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