Brendan O’Carroll recalls childhood brush with the law

Funnyman Brendan O’Carroll yesterday revealed how he had a brush with the law at the tender age of nine — and ended up in a tough reform school.

The Mrs Brown’s Boys star was caught shoplifting and was subsequentlyaccompanied to court by his mother Maureen, who was the first female Labour TD in the Dáil.

On the morning of his ninth birthday, he wore his suit going into Bewley’s in Dublin for his usual birthday treat of a cup of coffee and a chocolate eclair, but not before his mum took him to the Children’s Court in Cabra.

Brendan recalled: “I knew she had the power to stop it going to court. But I think she thought the day in court would do me the power of good.

“When we came out of the courthouse I asked her what had happened, as I didn’t understand, and she said we’d talk about it later.”

The pair then went to Bewley’s where she allowed Brendan to scoff eight chocolate eclairs, washed down with a cappuccino.

The then visited a place called Freddie’s Funhouse, where the pair posed for pictures in a photo booth.

These are now the only remaining pictures that Brendan, 58, has with his late mum.

However, when they got home to Finglas, Maureen told young Brendan that they had to talk. He recalled: “She told me that it hadn’t gone well in court and that I had to go away for a while. She told me I had to surrender myself at Pearse Street Garda Station the next morning. I was absolutely devastated.”

And while Brendan was sentenced to three months at the Daingean reform school in Co Offaly, his mother managed to get him released after just three weeks.

In an interview with RTÉ’s John Murray, he said: “I was lucky… they were thrilled to know that I could serve the Mass in Latin as an altar boy. I became the golden boy of Daingean! I served Mass for them every morning.

“But I learned my lesson about stealing. I was determined from then on never to get caught again.”

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