Local Fianna Fáil TD, Darragh O’Brien has said that the appalling murder of a 56 year old local man, Mr. Dermot Byrne, which occurred in Swords during the early hours of Saturday night, was a heinous crime which has no place in the Fingal community.
He commented, “My thoughts and prayers remain with Dermot Byrne’s family and friends. Dermot was a well-respected man in our community whose life was taken in an act of pure violence.
“While details continue to emerge, let us make no mistake that this was a heinous and most vicious crime that has absolutely no place in our community. The perpetrator(s) must be brought to justice.
“Public order issues are becoming more and more prevalent as Swords continues to emerge as an attractive late night spot for socialising. As venues and late bars become popular with visitors travelling from all over the country, the number of people on the streets of Swords makes it more likely for incidents to occur.
“I have been warning for some time now that parts of Fingal including Swords have been rapidly increasing in population year-on-year. The latest CSO figures show that Swords and the surrounding hinterland have expanded to the size of a city; however, resources allocated to policing our area do reflect those changes.
He added, “Over the past 5 years Garda numbers have been cut in the Dublin Fingal area by 20%. Swords in particular lost 12 full-time Gardaí, even though it was transforming into the busiest district in the Capital during the same period.
“Our society depends on Gardaí to feel safe in their communities and to uphold the rule of law. The bottom line is that the Gardaí are stretched beyond their limit and they simply do not have the manpower to maintain a strong presence on our streets and engage in robust crime prevention measures.
“I’m hoping that we can see extra Garda patrols in the area, particularly at weekends to reassure the local community following this attack. The Government needs to ensure the Gardaí receive the resources they need to prevent and investigate these sorts of incidents.
“I urge anyone with information relating to the incident to get in contact with Swords Garda Station by calling 016664700,” concluded Deputy O’Brien