Not a good example
IT has been said before, not this page, but the introduction of Joint Policing Committees has been one of the successful elements in the reform of local government.
Last week’s annual meeting in the Four Seasons Hotel in Carlingford again was a good example of democracy in action.
Anyone could attend the meeting which was open to members of the public where they could ask questions to local Garda management in Chief Superintendent Christy Mangan and Superintendent Gerry Curley.
We now get a clearer picture of what is happening in terms of policing in the county and have a clearer picture of the level of crime carried out in the county.
Gardai have a chequered history with crime statistics, if we recall the breadth test controversy of the recent past, but the statistics presented last week are clear and understandable and gives a true picture of what is happening in the Dundalk District over a period of time.
Headline crimes included 89 serious assaults, 121 minor assaults, 33 sexual assaults, 27 threats to the person, many of which are drugs related.
Thirty-four arrests had been made in respect of possessing drugs for supply while 123 were arrested for possession of drugs for personal use at 123.
The number of people stopped and search was 974. Most of these searches related to people suspected of having drugs or offensive weapons as well as searches of property carried out under warrant.
Thirty people were arrested for carrying offensive weapons, 65 incidents of fraud, and 268 incidents of criminal damage, and 439 public order offences recorded.
There were 86 reports of missing persons, which was a demanding issue which placed serious pressure on garda resources, said Supt Curley.
During the first nine months of the year, there were 205 burglaries, 601 thefts, comprising 267 thefts from shops, 111 thefts from vehicles, 131 thefts (others), and 22 robberies.
A total of 495 vehicles were seized by gardai for a variety of offences including no insurance, no tax, and defects, as well as for involvement in criminal activity. There were 520 traffic offences recorded.
These statistics lay bare what is going on in the Dundalk Garda District and it is progress to have such details revealed on a regular basis.
The JPC meetings also give Garda management an opportunity to lay out their strategy and explain the problems they experience in relation to resources. I don’t like UFC and don’t much care for the behaviour of Conor McGregor either, although I wish him no ill will and like to see any Irish person do well in their chosen field.
Certainly McGregor has achieved massive success both sporting and financial.
Yet his antics and trash talk in the lead up to the weekend fight in Las Vegas were very unpleasant and what happened afterwards with attacks on McGregor and his supporters were just disgraceful.
However much I say UFC and McGregor are not my cup of tea, there are thousands of committed supporters, with plenty of Irish supporters having travelled over to Las Vegas for the fight, while thousands more got up in the wee small hours of Sunday morning to watch the fight live, paying a premium of upwards of €60 for the pleasure.
However you do have to have concerns for the example these UFC stars are setting for the young impressionable minds that watch the sport with their brash behaviour.