Man accused of ‘street robbery’

A street drinker accused of robbing a handbag from a woman has been released on bail.

Dermot Colm Gerard Kelly, whose address was given on court papers as Simon Community, Bonds Hill, faces a charge of robbery relating to an alleged incident on September 28.

Derry Magistrate’s Court heard claims that £55 was in the handbag when it was stolen during what an investigating officer called a “street robbery”.

It is alleged the 31-year-old took the woman’s bag from her and there was a struggle between them.

Kelly was located a short distance away and was arrested. When cautioned the 31-year-old allegedly told police he took the bag because he thought there was money in it.

Opposing bail, an investigating officer told the court both Kelly and the woman are street drinkers. He said police feared the 31-year-old may try to contact her and interfere with her.

The officer revealed Kelly has over 70 previous convictions and police have concerns he would reoffend if released on bail.

Defence solicitor Keith Kyle told the court his client admits taking the handbag from the woman.

However, he urged the court to give Kelly an “opportunity” and release him on bail with stringent conditions.

Deputy District Judge Mervyn Bates released the 31-year-old on his own bail of £500 and banned him from crossing any of the three bridges or entering the cityside.

Kelly was also banned from having any contact with the alleged injured party and ordered to abide by a curfew. He will appear in court again on November 2.