A CONNACHT rugby player will avoid a conviction for a public order offence providing he undertakes a training session with a Westport underage rugby team.
The novel suggestion in lieu of a conviction was made by Judge Mary Devins at Westport District Court. Peter Robb, with an address of 37 Laurleen, Stillorgan, Co Dublin, appeared before court after failing to pay a fixed charge penalty notice for being found to be a danger to himself in Westport on April 9 last.
Garda Paul Lafferty told the court that on the date in question, Mr Robb was arrested at 12.20am on Bridge St, Westport, as he was deemed to be a danger to himself. Representing himself, Mr Robb said the fine had gone to his family home in Dublin, and that he had failed to pay the notice because he lives in Galway during the week.
Asked what he did for a living, Mr Robb said he plays rugby for Connacht. On hearing this Judge Devins put the matter back for second calling and mused that young rugby fans she knows would not be happy with her. Resuming the case, the Judge asked Mr Robb why he had ended up in court. Mr Robb replied that he had ‘one too many’ on the night in question.
Judge Devins told the court that she almost always gives a young person a chance on a first conviction and usually orders them to pay a contribution in lieu of a conviction. However, on this occasion, the Judge suggested that if Mr Robb gave of his time by training an underage team in the Westport area, she would give him the benefit of the Probation Act.
The matter was put back to November 16 for mention.