Smashed prison windows

A prisoner in the Midlands Prison who smashed the windows of the recreation room after getting upset over his niece being searched in the presence of a male prison officer was last week given community service.

A prisoner in the Midlands Prison who smashed the windows of the recreation room after getting upset over his niece being searched in the presence of a male prison officer was last week given community service.

Karl Mullen, 2 Rowlagh Crescent, Clondalkin, Dublin 22, was charged with criminal damage at the Midlands Prison, Dublin Road, on February 20 last year.

Inspector Aidan Farrelly gave evidence that at 3.39pm on the day, Mullen picked up the top of a mop bucket and smashed eight reinforced windows in the recreation room, causing €1,479 worth of damage.

The inspector said that Mullen gave no reason why he had done it. Mullen had a long list of previous convictions, including criminal damage and robbery.

Defence for Mullen explained that on the day, Mullen was being visited by family members and his niece was searched in the presence of a male officer, which is against regulations.

Mullen was subsequently denied privileges in the prison for 56 days and was docked €5 a week for 50 weeks to repay the damages, meaning he has already paid €250 and is willing to continue repaying €5 a week.

Defence said that Mullen had been serving an eight and a half year sentence and was released the week before Christmas last. Mullen is now liaising with the probation service and attending an addiction programme, and he is also on methadone.

Judge Catherine Staines put the matter back to March 26 for a probation report and community service report.

The judge recommended 150 hours’ community service in lieu of three months in prison.