herald

Sunday 17 December 2017

Jonny won't be the last victim of violence on Dublin's streets

ThE knifing of Dublin footballer Jonny Cooper highlights once again the dark, dangerous underbelly of our capital city.

This young man was stabbed multiple times in a savage and unprovoked attack on Dorset Street at 5am last Saturday.

He suffered horrific injuries around the neck and face and could have lost an eye, or even his life. His attacker then robbed him before running off.

Sadly and shamefully, Jonny (right) won't be the last innocent citizen to be viciously attacked and robbed in the city centre.

Over the past number of years I have time and again called for a sustained and targeted garda crackdown on the frightening levels of crime and antisocial behaviour in this area.

crisis

Crimes against a person, such as serious assaults, muggings, and thefts, along with drug offences and anti-social behaviour have long since reached crisis levels.

The latest CSO crime figures released for the year to June confirmed this. There has been an alarming increase in nearly all categories of crime against the person and, tellingly, theft and robberies were also up.

In the aftermath of the attack on Jonny Cooper the most pressing and urgent priority must now be to tackle growing lawlessness and violence in Dublin city centre.

Parts of the inner city, day and night, have become no-go areas for many people. Fear of mugging and assault is rampant.

In these areas, petty crime is endemic and there exists a threatening and intimidating environment of open-air drug-dealing and taking.

Acting Commissioner Noirin O'Sullivan must be aware of the serious breakdown of law and order in our capital city.

violence

When she appeared before the Public Accounts Committee, as recently as July of this year, she warned of how our society had deteriorated and spoke ominously of a "rush to violence" that was making this country a far more violent place.

The latest, brutal, savage attack on Jonny Cooper must be a wake up call for all concerned for the safety and well being for our citizens.

The time for talking has long passed, we need action now from the Government to tackle street crime in our city.

It is simply intolerable that innocent people can no longer walk the streets of our capital without fearing for their safety, even for their very lives.

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