A jail term of 17 months was imposed on a man for stealing three cars in Cork as the judge noted that this brought the culprit’s total car thefts to 31 cars.
Judge Olann Kelleher said, “He is 24. He has 212 convictions which is incredible for a man his age. And he has stolen 31 cars in Cork that he has pleaded guilty to.”
Eddie Burke solicitor, said Stephen Coughlan had cooperated with the garda investigation into these thefts.
Judge Kelleher, said, “I accept that. But what about the poor people whose cars are taken – he doesn’t cooperate with them at all.”
Garda Tom Delaney said that when Stephen Coughlan was charged he replied, “I am sorry for what I did. I am sorry to the people I took the stuff from.”
Garda Delaney said that the three people whose cars were taken expressed the hope that the young man would get the help he needed to rehabilitate and turn his life around.
Coughlan pleaded guilty to three counts of stealing cars and five counts of stealing property from five other unlocked cars. He also admitted dangerous driving.
Garda Delaney said the dangerous driving occurred at 9am at the Bloomfield interchange at Mount Oval on November 17 2020.
There was a second incident of dangerous driving when the car he was driving was seen weaving in and out of lanes of traffic shortly after the Bloomfield incident.
Mr Burke said, “Things are not great for him at home.”
Recently, at the same court Stephen Coughlan pleaded guilty to charges including the impersonation of a member of An Garda Síochána. He asked young teenagers their names and addresses, what was in their bags and whether they had phones.
Stephen Coughlan from Maulbawn, Passage West, County Cork, pleaded guilty at Cork District Court to the charge of impersonating a garda at 4.30pm on the afternoon of September 13, 2020.
Judge Kelleher said he would imagine that the teenagers got upset about being approached in this way and added, “If I was their age I would have gotten excited too.”
Sergeant Pat Lyons said the boys who were aged around 14 or 15 were at the skateboard park when Coughlan arrived and announced himself as an undercover garda and asked for their names and addresses. He also asked what they had in their bags and what type of phones they had. He ended up running from the scene. He said later that he was trying to get money for drugs.