Hatchet-wielding burglar shouts at gardaí: “come on I’ll take ye”

Hatchet-wielding burglar shouts at gardaí: “come on I’ll take ye”

GARDAÍ responding to a burglary in progress at a house in Sunday’s Well were confronted by the burglar, who ran at them with a hatchet over his head shouting “come on I’ll take ye.”

Garda Keith Aher said he and his colleague were going through the house room by room in the early hours of the morning, to make sure there was nobody present when they found Mark Foley, aged 42, dressed in dark clothing and carrying the hatchet.

“He was brandishing the hatchet and he raised it over his head, shouting, ‘come on I’ll take ye’,” Garda Aher testified yesterday at Cork Circuit Criminal Court, where Foley was jailed for three years.

Garda Aher said the accused had 67 previous convictions, of which 58 were for burglary.

Fearing for their safety, gardaí retreated and held the door closed but re-entered when they heard the sound of glass breaking.

Gardaí told him to drop the hatchet, but he ran at them a second time. He was pepper-sprayed, but gardaí still had to struggle with him to effect an arrest.

When later released, he fled to London, where he had lived for the past four years. The extradition warrant came to light in the UK when he turned up for a medical appointment in London, for a serious foot condition.

Judge Seán Ó Donnabháin said: “To think he broke into a dwelling with a hatchet, and then confronted gardaí with it while advancing towards them. His behaviour was extremely violent.”

The judge said that even with a plea of guilty, “a sentence of five years is merited for that crime. I will suspend two years of that.”

Mark Foley had been living at White Oaks, Carrigaline, County Cork, at the time of the burglary, four years ago.

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