A man working in door security turned to criminality himself when he armed himself with a machete and demanded cash from a young woman working behind the counter in a Cork filling station.
23-year-old Jamie Quilligan of 6 Chestnut Close, Mahon, Cork, faced sentencing today for carrying out a robbery at Circle K garage, Blackrock Road, Cork, at 5.30 p.m. on November 17 last year.
Quilligan pleaded guilty to that crime and today Detective Garda Seán Stack gave evidence of how the crime was committed.
“On November 17, 2019 he entered the Circle K filling station armed with a machete and he started banging the counter very aggressively with it, putting the lone female behind the counter in fear. He was continuously aggressive,” Det. Garda Stack said.
He got away with €400 in cash and cash register drawer containing another €305. Gardaí were nearby at the time and Jamie Quilligan was identified. The defendant left the Circle K on Blackrock Road and went down by a nearby laneway to the amenity walk where he changed his clothes and hid the proceeds of his crime. He then walked along the Marina.
He was arrested a short time later. In his first interview he denied everything. In the second he made some admissions. Finally, in the third interview he was shown the clothing stashed on the amenity walk and he admitted they were his.
The till and the cash was recovered. Det. Garda Stack said everything was recovered apart from the machete.
The victim impact statement was prepared by the 19-year-old woman who was alone behind the counter when the robbery was carried out. This was not read out in court but the judge said, “This 19-year-old was very upset by this and she cannot understand why it happened. Scared after it happened she finds it difficult to explain this to herself or anyone else.”
Nikki O’Sullivan defence barrister said, “He was working in door security prior to this. It was his first offence ever. He did make admissions. During the first interview he apologised to the young lady.
“He entered a drug treatment programme for two months.” Judge Ó Donnabháin said it was unusual for a young man to get involved in a first instance of criminality at such a serious level.
Ms O’Sullivan BL said Quilligan had been using drugs and got himself into a debt he was desperate to pay. “He was in a very low place and he saw this as his only way out,” she said.
Judge Ó Donnabháin said, “Because it is a first offence I will adjourn the sentence until Easter to see how he gets on and to see if he is remorseful – there is a victim and he (Quilligan) is working.”
Sentencing was adjourned until April 14 2021.