Drug addict given 'final chance' and granted bail
A 24-year-old drug addict with 76 previous criminal convictions has been released on bail as a "final chance".
Ryan Michael Harkin, of Rockmills, Strand Road in Londonderry, has eight convictions for burglaries, three for going equipped and seven for theft. But he told the police after his arrest: "That is one thing I don't do - I don't do burglary".
Harkin was arrested last week-end following a spate of attempted burglaries and thefts from houses and cars in the Waterfoot Park and Bridgewater areas of Waterside in the city.
A police officer told Londonderry Magistrates' Court the charges against the defendant arose out of a report made to police by a Waterfoot Park resident in the early hours of last Friday.
The court heard that when police arrived at the scene, the defendant fled, but was caught in a bush where he had consumed diazepam and cannabis.
The officer told District Judge Barney McElholm that he believed the defendant, if released on bail, would re-offend in order to feed his drug addiction.
However, Mr McElholm said he would give Harkin one final chance and released him on his own bail of £1,000 to appear in court again on August 11.
As part of his bail conditions, the defendant was banned from entering the Waterside area and was told to observe an 8pm to 8am curfew.
Harkin is also banned from consuming any non-prescribed drugs and from contacting any of the victims or witnesses in the case. He will additionally be electronically tagged.