By Elaine Keogh
A man who admitted stealing Pixie the parrot from his perch outside a shop in Dunshaughlin, so he could sell him as a Christmas present, apologised in court to the owner of the exotic bird.
The case against Conor Grall (20) of Portland Row, Dubin 1 was adjourned last month because Judge Patrick McMahon wanted to hear what the owner, Mr Paul Barr, had to say about the theft.
Grall admitted stealing the parrot, which is worth around €1,500, and his cage worth €500 from outside Mr Barr's shop on the Main Street in Dunshaughlin, on the 13th December last. He also admitted damaging the cage.
At Dunshaughlin district court yesterday Mr Barr told the Judge that Pixie was an eight year old rescue bird and for the last couple of years he had kept him outside his shop because of a skin condition which means he needs sunshine and fresh air.
He told the Judge that Pixie is fine but had been "a little upset on the day," he was taken.
When the Judge asked Mr Barr how he was feeling he said he was "relieved" that Pixie was found and his cage is now "secured to the wall."
He will, Mr Barr said, live for between 60 and 80 years and he is back entertaining people who pass by the shop every day.
When the Judge asked Grall, who is unemployed, what he had to say to Mr Barr, he replied, "I apologise, what can I say."
In reply to the Judge asking him had he the bird already sold (before he stole him) he said, "I did, yes. I knew somebody that wanted one."
Judge McMahon said to him, "when you decided to do something, you decided to do it high profile."
The court heard Grall has no previous convictions and the Judge said he wanted him to make a contribution to a charity.
He suggested he donate €200 to the charity Cycling for Suicide and gave him time to gather the money.
Otherwise he said the alternative would be a conviction and fine of €500. He adjourned the case to next month.