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Battle to cut grass that hid sex attacker

Families in the north Dublin estate where a woman was sexually assaulted in long grass have been calling for the grass to be cut for the past year.

Gardai are searching for a man who sexually assaulted the woman as she walked home in the north of the city in the early hours of Thursday morning, after hiding in the three-foot long grass in darkness.

Residents have been calling for the grass to be cut since last summer, because they feared it was too dangerous for children and women.

One local told the Herald: "I have emails that I sent to Fingal County Council about the grass, but they said there was nothing they could do because they're waiting for the owners to hand it over to them.

"It's been like this for over a year."

Another local said: "The main concern now is to get the word out that this has happened so that other women can be warned to watch out and not walk alone.

"The grass in that park needs to be cut and the lights fixed. The man wouldn't have been able to hide anywhere if the grass had been cut."



transfer

A spokesperson for Dolminack Developments, which built an apartment block close to the site of the crime, said it's up to the owner of the site to maintain the grass.

"The transfer should happen from the owner now so that Fingal County Council can take it over. We were contracted to do fencing works and pavement works and we've done those.

"It's up to the owner now to transfer the land to Fingal County Council, and for now it's up to him to maintain the land."

Cllr Kieran Dennison said people have made complaints about how long grass encourages people to congregate and make others feel unsafe.

"It leads to problems like people hanging around and I've had complaints from residents of people hanging out in hollows and the open space where the grass has been allowed to grow."

One local warned: "In some parts the grass is over a foot long.

"It's used by people all over the area and it's dangerous walking through it."

hnews@herald.ie