Policing ‘as normal’ despite COVID-19

Conor McGSinn Féin Councillor Conor D. McGuinness has said that policing will continue ‘as normal’ in the Dungarvan District despite uncertainty caused by the COVID-19 outbreak.

McGuinness said:

“I spoke with senior Garda management locally to discuss the policing plan for Dungarvan and West Waterford in the wake of Commissioner Harris’s statement yesterday. I understand some people are anxious with news that Gardaí resources may be moved from crime prevention and investigation to high visibility patrols in urban areas or other tasks.

“Others have expressed concern about inadequately trained Gardaí being sworn in and about prisoners being released. Policing will continue as normal in the Dungarvan District for the foreseeable. This means investigations will not be shelved and the normal work of An Garda Síochána will go on.

“Garda Stations remain open however if possible please avoid calling in person and phone instead. Dungarvan Garda Station 058 48600. In an emergency call 999 or 112.

“Recently sworn-in Gardaí will be assigned to experienced Gardaí to be mentored and trained in.

“Gardaí will work with the Courts Service to prioritise criminal cases as necessary and to use video link where possible. Gardaí have not been barred from making arrests.

“No decision has been made on prisoner release but if it occurs the Prison Service are likely to consider only those with up to 3 months left on their sentences, and will not release prisoners convicted for violent crimes.

“Gardaí locally will cooperate and support community responses to the COVID-19 outbreak as requested. I will liaise with Gardaí and relevant bodies in this.

“I asked that the strategic importance of Dungarvan as Europe’s main centre for the production of paracetamol be taken into account in the District policing plan.”