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Father of arrested 16-year-old: "There was a big bang. I thought they were putting the door in"

The teenager was led from his home by ten gardaí first thing this morning. It’s in connection with last year’s ‘Jobstown’ protest.

Image: Photocall Ireland

Update: 13.27

THE FATHER OF the 16-year-old arrested this morning by gardaí investigating the false imprisonment of Tánaiste Joan Burton during last November’s protest in Jobstown has said his family felt ‘degraded’ by how officers handled the operation.

Ten gardaí showed up at the door of their Brookview home at around ten past seven this morning, he told TheJournal.ie. 

“There was a big bang. I thought they were putting the door in.”

The father — who gave us his name, but asked that we not publish it — said three unmarked garda cars arrived at the house to carry out the arrest.

The teenager’s two older brothers were also in the house at the time, along with his father and mother.

He’s just turned 16 a week-and-a-half ago. He goes to the local school, but he’s missing it today because of this.

He said his son had been marched out of the house, and that they were told he was being taken to Tallaght Garda Station.

The teenager’s mother also asked to be taken to the station, and is still there this morning, he said.

He’s very into politics — he goes to all the meetings and marches, and he’s always watching the politicians on television, which is unusual for someone his age.

He said his son was a member of a newly-formed residents association, which was involved in initiatives to help the youth in the area.

The protest at Jobstown last year.

Regarding the Jobstown protest, which saw Tánaiste Joan Burton trapped in her car for several hours by a group of angry demonstrators, he said:

He was up there at the protest. There was a lot a police and they wanted them away.

He insisted his son hadn’t done anything at the protest that would land him in trouble.

“He’s not in school now this morning because he’s in a cell now in Tallaght station,” he added.

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He said the family had been shocked by the arrival of the gardaí early this morning, noting:

“They didn’t even use the knocker. They just banged loudly on the centre of the glass.

The whole thing was very degrading.

Three other people were also arrested this morning by gardaí investigating the Jobstown protest. One man is being held in Tallaght, and a man and a woman are being detained at Rathfarnham.

Anti Austerity Alliance TD Paul Murphy, two of the party’s councillors, and a member of republican group Éirigí were arrested in an early-morning garda operation yesterday, and questioned for several hours.

UPDATE 1.27pm: The teenager has since been released. Speaking to us this afternoon, his father said he had spoken to him and that he was “doing okay”. 

Read: Four more arrests over Joan Burton car protest

Joan on Jobstown: ‘When I was in that car I was worried about the parallels with fascism’

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About the author:

Daragh Brophy

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