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Claremorris ‘young thugs’ need ‘to be dealt with’

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Councillor says parents have a lot to answer for

Anton McNulty

A local councillor has warned several ‘young thugs’ causing havoc in Claremorris that their behaviour will not be tolerated.
The south Mayo town gained unwanted attention last week following a violent disturbance in the early hours of Sunday, February 6, when a number of young males were involved in public-order incidents and assaults.
The main incidents took place outside a business premises on Dalton Street between 2.40am and 3am after a large number of young people congregated following the closure of local nightclubs.
A clip of some of the violence captured on a mobile phone shows a young man being attacked by a group. This footage was widely shared on social media sites.
The level of violence shocked many people, prompting calls for the fast-tracking of CCTV cameras to be installed around the town.
Local councillor Tom Connolly said that local people have reacted angrily to the violence and that the behaviour would not be tolerated anymore.
“Claremorris is not a violent town and has been thriving over the last number of years, but there is a certain element which needs to be dealt with and this nipped in the bud,” he told The Mayo News. “It seems to be young thugs, but their parents also have a lot to answer for too. Where are they?
“There is a young element who have sprung up and they think they can take the law into their own hands and abuse people and business premises. It will not be tolerated and the guards are taking a swift reaction to police the streets and bring these criminals to justice,” he said.

Video-taker sought
During the week, Gardaí in Claremorris issued a witness appeal to identify people involved in the public order and assault incidents.
Speaking to The Mayo News, local superintendent Gabriel Moran reiterated the appeal and urged the person who shared the video footage to come forward with any footage which can help the investigation.
“Gardaí are following lines of enquiry in relation to that incident and will place people involved before the courts. We will ensure any opportunities to prosecute people involved are followed up.
“We continue to review CCTV from premises, and I am keen to emphasis the appeal to any members of the public who may have recorded material themselves to make it available to the Gardaí in Claremorris and contact us in relation to that. One of our key appeals is for the person who took the footage to make contact and speak to the gardaí in Claremorris,” he said.
Gardaí clamping down
Superintendent Gabriel Moran added that the lifting of Covid-19 restrictions and the reopening of the night time economy was always going to lead to increased number of public order offences. However, he said that Garda resources are being directed towards addressing the situation.
“We have increased and put on increased patrols, particularly on Saturday nights, to address increased anti-social behaviour incidents. We have increased resources and focused on the centre of town on Saturday night and will continue to do that to continue to reassure the public and deter offences,” he said.
Over the weekend, three people in Claremorris were arrested for public order offences, with two charged to appear before the local district court. The other matter is currently being progressed through the legal system.

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