DECISIVE action needs to be taken to curb a sharp rise in anti-social behaviour on the Old Cratloe Road in Limerick after a gang of teenagers were accused of carrying out random attacks in the area.
The call comes from Sinn Féin TD Maurice Quinlivan and Councillor John Costelloe who have called for Garda intervention.
A number of incidents have occurred over the last number of months as a large group of teenagers started randomly assaulting people.
Last weekend, a man was suffered knife injuries from an attack as he walked along the Old Cratloe Road. Other incidents included students being mugged and anti-social behaviour escalating to incidents of criminal damage to houses and commercial properties in the area.
Deputy Quinlivan said that the “large group of teenagers roaming the area were randomly assaulting total strangers with apparent impunity.
“According to locals, a number of adults have suffered severe beatings while one man had his nose and eye socket broken in unprovoked attacks.
“It is totally unacceptable that law abiding residents are being subjected to this lawlessness by a large group of roaming teenagers, a number of who are already well known to the Gardaí.
“What is going on here has moved far beyond anti-social activity and has descended into outright criminality.
“I have spoken with the Garda Chief Superintendent and asked that extra Gardaí be deployed to the area. I have had numerous calls form upset local residents demanding that the Gardaí clear this element from their streets.”
“Furthermore, incidents of “daylight drug dealing” have been reported to Gardaí which has left many residents extremely concerned.
Councillor Costelloe said “Residents feel particularly vulnerable after a recent assault when they claim that it took the Gardaí an hour and 20 minutes to respond to the 999 call.
“Gardaí need to quickly get a grip on this situation” Cllr Costelloe said.
“It will take a robust Garda response to bring this situation under control. I am disappointed that a week after the recent serious assault, that nobody has yet been charged with the offence.
“The culprits of this criminality need to be brought before the courts where hopefully they will receive the salutary prison sentences they deserve. It is not simply good enough to send around a patrol car now and again. This problem needs a properly prepared and resourced Garda plan of action,” he stated.