Fears grow that ‘Shankill Stalker’ is back on prowl

by Emma Nolan

ANOTHER violent attack has left Killiney locals shaken this week.
A woman in her 40s was sexually assaulted by a lone male as she walked close to the entrance of Bayview.
The incident occurred in the Bayview area of Killiney on Monday evening at around 5.45 and follows another incident earlier in January where three American tourists were attacked in Killiney.
The attacker is described as being six foot in height.
The woman suffered minor injuries in the Bayview attackand did not require medical assistance at the scene.
Locals have been expresssing their shock and fear on Facebook following the assault, with one posting: “I hope this isn’t the return of the Shankill stalker.”
Gardai said that the culprit fled the scene on foot in the direction of Killiney Hill Road.
An incident room has now been set up in Shankill Garda Station to investigate the attack, and gardai are seeking the public’s assistance.
Cormac Devlin, An Cathaoirleach of Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council, has called for a review of lighting in the Killiney/Shankill area to ensure it is fit for purpose.
He said: “This is the second serious incident in the Killiney area this year. I would ask the public to remain vigilant and report any suspicious activity to gardai.”
This time last year, a spate of sexual assaults occurred in the Shankill area. In each case, a lone male approached a lone female and an assault took place.
While no one was seriously injured, the attacks caused a lot of fear and anxiety in the area and locals were urged not to take vigilante action at the time.
The first incident occurred on December 2, 2015 and took place close to Shankill Dart Station. The second occurred on January 3, 2016, near the entrance of the Holly Park housing estate.
Two further assaults were reported, on February 9 and 10, at Quinn’s Road and Military Road near Killiney.
Meanwhile, two suspicious approaches in the area were also reported last year, on January 20 and February 7.
It is understood that there may be a connection between these reported incidents and the two most recent from this year.

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