A group of young people dining out in Kinsale were petrified when they were robbed by two men who showed them a long knife.
Detective Garda Michael Brosnan said the young people — all aged around 20 — had been sitting at a table outside a restaurant, with their phones and wallets visible on the table.
The detective said that CCTV, which was subsequently examined, showed Danny O’Brien and Brian Keane taking an “almost predatory” interest in the group.
“They hatched a plan to rob the youngsters and did so at a local park.
"The young people were so petrified that one young woman almost vomited at the scene.”
The robbers calmly told them to take out their wallets and smartphones and said they would not be taking iPhones, because they believed these had tracking devices.
29-year-old Brian Keane, of 1A Market Place, Kinsale, County Cork, who is originally from Co Kerry, and 29-year-old Danny O’Brien, of 70 Bracken Court, Donnybrook, Douglas, Co Cork, both pleaded guilty to three counts of robbery of €100 in cash, on the first count, a mobile phone, on the second, and a jacket, in the third offence. Those robberies were carried out at Long Quay, Kinsale, on September 5, 2020.
Danny O’Brien was arraigned separately on a charge from a second book of evidence and pleaded guilty to demanding, with menaces, €6,000 in cash or a Ford Fiesta car, between June 1, 2019, and July 26, 2019, as payment for a drugs debt.
Judge Seán Ó Donnabháin sentenced O’Brien to three years, consecutive to what he is already serving. He sentenced Keane to four years, backdated to September 2020, when he went into custody.
Paula McCarthy, BL, said O’Brien had a diagnosis of depression, but was doing well in prison.
Det Garda Ian Breen said, “He certainly seems to me to be a changed man in custody.”
Shane O’Callaghan, BL, for Keane, said the young man had an extremely difficult past — albeit with a family in Kerry who support him — and he has been in custody for the most part of his life since turning 17.
Judge Ó Donnabháin said the two men might forget their crimes, but their young victims in Kinsale, and the family who were threatened by O’Brien, were left with the trauma.
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