rural crime

Man describes son being punched in the face during home invasion

A new UTV Ireland documentary takes a look at rural crime around the country.

THE PAST FEW years have seen a surge in crime targeting people in rural areas.

These have been typified by violent intrusions from gangs of criminals then using high-speed vehicles to escape on Ireland’s motorway network.

One of the most high-profile incidents was the attack on the Corcoran family in November 2013 when seven men broke in and assaulted the family in their home – an action that resulted in the gang receiving a combined 72 years in prison last month.

Video / YouTube

This evening UTV Ireland will be screening a special report as part of its ‘Insight’ documentary series and will look at how this type of crime has become prevalent across the country.

Who is being affected by these crimes?

Speaking on the programme, Gerry Garvey from Pallasgreen in Co Limerick describes the home invasion he and his family were subject to.

“We were faced with a couple of intruders bursting in through the door, fully masked, one with a sawn-off shotgun. My daughter was tied up, I was put face down on the ground, handcuffed behind my back and a sawn-off shotgun shoved into my temple,” he said.

My son who had run upstairs, one of the guys caught him just as he was getting into the bathroom and he got a belt into the jaw, so he was assaulted. That’s not something he forgets too easily.

Lack of numbers

Also speaking on the programme, Tipperary-based garda and GRA representative Tom Finnan speaks about how a depletion in personnel numbers has badly impacted on the ability of gardaí to combat these types of incidents.

Video / YouTube

“Old people, people living alone, are vulnerable in their homes due to us not having the full resources that we need. Station closures shouldn’t have been happening when they did happen,” he said.

Since 2008 there has been a heavy drop off in the number of gardaí stationed around the country.

Earlier this year, the number of active gardaí dropped below 11,000 for the first time since 2006. This trend may be on the turn however, with 99 new gardaí graduates being assigned to stations around the country in July. 

Read: “It’s bandit country now” – Padraig Nally says rural crime is getting worse

Also: ‘They’re just broken’: The reality of border policing in a depleted force

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