STAFF members at two stores in Cork had their personal mobile phones stolen within days by the same man and today the culprit was jailed for ten months.
In one store, Roy Twohig, 40, enquired about buying something and when the staff member left the counter area to check the query, he reached in and stole the phone.
In another he went to a staff room that was off limits to the public and he stole another phone – this time an €800 iPhone XR.
Twohig pleaded directly with Judge Olann Kelleher not to make the sentence he faced today, consecutive to two years he was already serving.
Sergeant John Kelleher said Roy Twohig of no fixed address had 221 previous convictions, including 16 for burglary and 74 for theft.
After defence solicitor, Diarmuid Kelleher, addressed Cork District Court in mitigation, Twohig asked if he could speak directly to the judge.
“I know I am in front of you a long, long time. I am 40. I am tired from it. It is going on for 24 years. I need to get out and cop on,” Twohig said.
Judge Kelleher said, “I have heard this speech numerous times.” Twohig agreed that he had spoken to the judge from the dock before but said he really needed to change and wanted to do so. His partner is about to have a baby.
Judge Kelleher imposed the ten months but said he would not make it consecutive to what Twohig was already serving so he will not spend any longer in jail.
Mr Kelleher, solicitor, said the defendant’s problem over the years was the abuse of prescription tablets but that he always gets himself clear and does well in prison. The difficulty arises with the lack of support on his release from prison, Mr Kelleher said.
The solicitor said the hope now was that the defendant would settle down with his partner and look after the baby due to be born shortly.
Sgt. Kelleher said that on October 3, 2019, the defendant entered Euro City, Carrigaline, and made enquiries of a member of staff about material for sale in shop. While the member of staff was busy away from the till, Twohig reached over the counter at the till and stole a mobile phone which was unattended on a shelf under the counter. The iPhone 6 beloned to a staff member.
On October 5 2019 at Homestore & More at Kinsale Road retail park, an employee said her iPhone XR valued €800 and her purse containing two bank cards had been taken from her jacket in the staff area.
On examination of CCTV a man wearing a red jacket, jeans and baseball cap could be seen leaving the staffroom with the phone in his hand.
She cancelled the cards and later an attempt was made to use these at Circle K in Cork Airport.
Twohig pleaded guilty to both thefts.