Stolen car driven down Fairhill's '52 steps'

Stolen car driven down Fairhill's '52 steps'
A view of 'The 52 Steps' in Fair Hill, Cork. Photo: Google Maps

GARDAÍ got numerous calls about a stolen car being driven at speed around the northside of Cork City in morning traffic — in an incident where the Volkswagen was driven down 'The 52 Steps'.

Sergeant Gearóid Davis said yesterday that the VW Passat was driven across Gurranabraher, Fairhill, Sun Valley Drive, and down to Watercourse Rd where it was driven at speed on to the forecourt of O’Reilly’s garage and around the back of the premises.

Tony Caufield of 221 Cathedral Rd, Gurranabraher, Cork, admitted driving the stolen car and to related counts of dangerous driving and having no insurance.

Judge Carol Ann Ní Chúllacháin sentenced him to seven months in jail at Cork District Court yesterday and banned him from driving for six years.

Sgt Davis said the incident occurred at around 9am on November 30, 2019.

In the course of the escapade, the car was driven against a one-way traffic flow and through a junction against red lights.

By the time the Passat stopped at Dominic St, three young men fled on foot from the car and ran in the direction of Pope’s Quay.

Caufield was soon found hiding behind two parked cars on Pope’s Quay. He was arrested and taken to Gurranabraher Garda Station.

Sgt Davis said the car had been stolen two days earlier in Ballinlough. Caufield had seven previous convictions for driving stolen cars.

Frank Buttimer, defence solicitor, said the 23-year-old acknowledged an untreated addiction difficulty. Caufield had addressed his addictions but only sporadically.

“He apologises to his own family for what he has put them through,” said Mr Buttimer. “His long-term plan is to move out of Ireland and make a fresh start.”

The solicitor said the young man had a partner who was standing by him and that she was present yesterday at Cork District Court to support the defendant.

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