Plea for Greater Garda Presence in Dunmore East

Eoghan Dalton Reports

A direct appeal was made to Waterford’s senior ranked Gardaí at a public meeting last week in City Hall. Cllr Jim Griffin (SF) asked if a guarantee could be given that there will be a large presence of Gardaí in Dunmore East over the coming months. He was one of several residents of Dunmore East and Ballymacaw at the meeting, where the City and County’s Joint Policing Committee welcomed members of the public to direct questions at Waterford’s top brass.He referred to the incident that happened in Dunmore East last July, where fisherman Jack Power died as a result of a stabbing. A boy aged 17 was arrested by investigating Gardaí and then released without charge.

Pictured at City Hall for the launch of the Waterford Public Participation Network Joint Policing Committee Strategic Plan (2018-2023) were City & County Mayor Declan Doocey, Senator Grace O'Sullivan, Garda Sergeant Finbar O'Sullivan, Supt Michael Lacey (Dungarvan), Josephine Feehily (Chairperson, Policing Authority), Supt Chris Delaney and Garda Sgt Gavin Hegarty. 									| Photo: John Power

Pictured at City Hall for the launch of the Waterford Public Participation Network Joint Policing Committee Strategic Plan (2018-2023) were City & County Mayor Declan Doocey, Senator Grace O'Sullivan, Garda Sergeant Finbar O'Sullivan, Supt Michael Lacey (Dungarvan), Josephine Feehily (Chairperson, Policing Authority), Supt Chris Delaney and Garda Sgt Gavin Hegarty. | Photo: John Power


“Can you assure me and my neighbours tonight, that we will have a big presence going forward into the dark nights of the winter,” asked the City West and Tramore Councillor.
“It was a breath of fresh air to see An Garda Síochána up at the Fleadh Cheoil, dancing with the people. We need them to come into our field says, our sports days, we need them to at our Christmas raffles, to get to know people.”He further claimed that “criminality in Dunmore East is now practically down to zero”.
Superintendent Chris Delaney told Cllr Griffin that Waterford An Garda Síochána would “put in the required number of officers to police Dunmore East, Passage East and indeed the sub-district area of Ferrybank, over the coming months”.

Explaining that he was “very conscious of feelings in particular locations, I am determined that we allocate the appropriate resources to make people feel safe in their homes”.
He was overall adamant that Gardaí are in a healthy state locally. Responding to a separate question, Supt Delaney said that force’s unit strength in Waterford “is way up” and urged people and media to get the message out that Gardaí are now well-equipped to deal with calls. Cllr Griffin also asked if the Council has to wait for a conviction before acting on individuals when the body has “good proof of criminality”. “I have noted that, over time, when we have very good strong evidence of criminality, it takes a prosecution before we can move that person on out of the community and I think that should change,” he said.The Council’s Director of Housing, Ivan Grimes told the room that the local authority cannot act on tenants without a conviction: “If a criminal investigation is active, we will always defer to the Guards.”

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