Defendant asks court to jail him

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A 49-year-old man has asked the court to ‘show him mercy’ by imposing a lengthy prison sentence.

Damien Joseph Young, of no fixed abode, made the appeal at Derry Magistrate’s yesterday when pleaded guilty to two charges of criminal damage on August 23.

The offences were committed less than a week after he was released from prison.

The court heard Young caused £250 of damage to a car parked across from the local police station.

He pulled the wing mirror off the car.

A short time later, Young went into the police station and damaged an electronic signature pad.

During police interview the defendant said he could not remember anything because he was drunk.

It was revealed Young is in breach of a six month suspended sentence imposed earlier this month.

Defence solicitor Seamus Quigley said this was the ‘classic case of someone who wants to be arrested’.

He told the court the plea was difficult, not because of Young’s lengthy criminal record but because of the specific instructions he had been given.

The solicitor said Young, who has a history of alcohol abuse, realises ‘short sentences just don’t work for him. It is a revolving door and he would ask the court to show him mercy by imposing a lengthy custodial sentence.

Mr Quigley added this would give the 49-year-old an opportunity to stay off alcohol and ‘give him the opportunity of standing a chance when he gets out’.

District Judge Barney McElholm activated the suspended sentence and jailed Young for a total of 18 months.