Gardai plan beach patrols over bank holiday weekend

by Gazette Reporter

GARDAI are beefing up patrols across Dublin ahead of the bank holiday weekend.

It follows a week of violence and intimidation that saw a 16-year-old boy hospitalised with serious head injuries after a gang of 30 attacked him with hammers in Baldoyle.

The same gang pursued another youth in Portmarnock 24 hours earlier. He barricaded himself into an elderly couple’s porch as they yelled: “You are dead.”

And on Saturday five people were arrested after a violent brawl involving youths and women in a Balbriggan housing estate over a e100 drugs debt.

Gardai fear good weather over the bank holiday weekend may lead to large gatherings on beaches – a flashpoint for trouble when alcohol is involved.

The Superintendant at Coolock station said: “I have refocused policing from checkpoints to patrols of open amenity areas, with a particular focus on youths and young adults.”

On Tuesday May 19 a 16-year-old boy received serious head injuries during a vicious assault at Seagrange Park in Baldoyle.

He was attacked with hammers by a gang of up to 30 youths and the horrific daylight assault was witnessed by several people out walking.

A video of the sickening attack has been widely shared on social media.

The previous day an off-duty Garda and his son were attacked by the same gang of youths, believed to be from the Darndale area, this time in Portmarnock.

And in an unrelated but equally terrifying incident a mass brawl broke out in the Hamilton Way housing estate in Balbriggan at around 4.30pm on Saturday.

Armed Gardai responded to the incident and one deployed his baton as a teenage suspect resisted arrest.

Gardai in Coolock, Raheny, Malahide, Swords and Balbriggan are now on high alert and have vowed to increase patrols following the spate of attacks.

Fianna Fail TD Sean Haughey contacted senior gardai in the district and was assured that resources were being allocated to deal with the problem.

In a reply to his email the Coolock Superintendant said: “I have engaged Public Order Units in support of beat patrols and pedal cycle patrols.”

The Superintendant at Raheny Garda Station also said he had “deployed extra dedicated patrols to police public amenities to include Baldoyle, Sutton and Howth, and our public parks.”

Haughey called on people to support the Gardai and provide them with information.

He said: “Most young people have acted responsibly during this pandemic, but I’m sure everyone has seen teenagers and young people who are disregarding public health advice by meeting in large groups.

“The recent attacks in Baldoyle and Portmarnock were vicious, with a large group ganging up on one person. I hope those responsible are brought to justice.”

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