Court hears remorseful Byrne made no money from robbery
JOHN BYRNE didn't receive any money from the robbery of Brauders Shop Wicklow Circuit Court heard last Friday.
Acting for Byrne (20) Michael O'Higgins, SC, said Byrne came from a ‘decent, respectable, hard working family. His actions were voluntary but he is not a hardened criminal'.
He said the probation report indicated Byrne was at ‘ low risk of reoffending'. He said Byrne was 18 at the time of the offence while the other youth was 19 years old at the time.
He said Byrne didn't receive any money from the robbery and this was confirmed by Sgt. Conor McEvoy. Mr. O'Higgins said Byrne was one of nine children and he had left school at the age of 17 years having being educated locally.
Byrne then went to work in the construction industry with his older brother and he had brought the van for work. He said one of the reasons he was involved in the robbery was because he had access to transport.
‘ The evidence suggests he was recruited by another individual,’ said Mr. O'Higgins. He also said Byrne was aware the other youth was carrying a knife when he got back into his van ‘and there is no getting away from that'. However, he said Byrne had no ‘ knowledge that the knife might be used to actually assault anyone' and said his coaccused is currently fac- ing a charge of murder.
He said Byrne is ‘deeply remorseful for his actions and this is reflected in the probation report. He continues to feel a great sense of shame arising out of what occurred. He has a strong insight into his actions in the sense that he played a role in the events which unfolded. He has a guilty conscience for playing a role where a shop keeper is now deceased.'
Mr. O'Higgins said Byrne was also aware that however badly he feels about it ‘it doesn't come close to what his (Mr. Deasy's) relatives have to bear on a daily basis.'