Former garda not guilty of cider theft
A former probationary garda was yesterday acquitted of the theft of cans of cider after a four-day trial at Wicklow Circuit Court.
James Murphy, from Duncormack, New Ross, Co Wexford, had been accused of dishonestly appropriating for himself two slabs of cider that had been stolen by two youths from a Centra shop on Dargle Road, Bray, in June 2009.
Mr Murphy (24) had pleaded not guilty to the charge, and yesterday a jury took just under two hours to return a unanimous “not guilty” verdict.
An emotional Mr Murphy, who resigned from the force as a result of the case, said he was delighted with the verdict and thanked his legal team and friends who stuck by him.
While Mr Murphy arrested two youths in Ballywaltrim Park on the date of the theft, nobody was prosecuted.
Mr Murphy said he had the cider in his locker for eight months before disposing of it. The cider was taken to a house party and consumed. That was a common practice. He did not consume any of it himself.