Lawless Ballyfermot mob attacked gardai who intervened when elderly woman was nearly hit by scrambler
‘We simply do not have enough gardai policing our streets 24/7, do not have the necessary equipment and are facing an exodus of officers demoralised by the entire situation’
Gardai were attacked by a lawless mob yesterday after they intervened when an elderly woman was nearly hit by a scrambler bike.
The shocking incident, which was widely circulated on social media, showed several bottles and missiles being thrown at two plain clothes officers in Ballyfermot. One of the gardai was hit by a bottle to the face and later received medical attention for a suspected broken jaw.
The incident followed a funeral for a young man, who died unexpectedly earlier this month, at the Church of the Assumption in Ballyfermot. Sources last night confirmed that a policing plan had been put in place to try ensure the safety of people as gardai had received information that a large number of scramblers would turnout.
Dublin Live has learned that the two officers who were targeted had intervened after an elderly woman was almost hit by one of the dozens of bikes tearing around the roads of the Dublin suburb. For a few terrifying moments the officers had to force a baying mob back with their batons drawn. Thugs threw punches and kicks while the Gardai tried to hold them back.
A source said: “There was a policing plan in place for people’s safety and gardai were not intrusive. But two officers had to intervene when the situation with the scrambler bikes got out of hand. There was too much of a risk that serious injury was going to be caused.
“The two gardai were then targeted by a large group and everyone has seen what happened. It was very unfortunate as there was a grieving family having a funeral for a loved one and they had no hand in this at all.”
Two men were arrested for dangerous driving on the Edenmore road area of Ballyfermot and were released last night with a file going to the Director of Public Prosecutions. Many of the young teenagers and men involved had their hoods up and snoods covering their faces as they caused havoc.
In the video of the incident where the garda is struck, people can also be heard goading “go on.” Several people then appear to run at the officer’s colleague – who withdraws his Asp baton to protect himself, although he does not strike anyone. A number of items are thrown at the two gardai before they walk to their unmarked patrol car before leaving the scene.
The terrifying incident follows previous attacks on Gardai in areas of West Dublin that locals said have become no go zone for police.
Mark Ferris, Garda Representative Association’s representative for DMR West, has called for a special task force to be set up. Ferris, a detective based in west Dublin, told Dublin Live: “Regrettably we must again address the issue of assaults on Gardai trying to uphold the peace and protecting public safety. I sincerely hope my colleague makes a speedy recovery from the injuries he received in the line of duty in Ballyfermot.
“The association condemns this latest attack on our colleague and hopes the government takes notice of events such as these and listens to our request for the immediate formation of a special task force to research these policing issues. The government needs to step up efforts to help officers protect themselves. A small minority cannot be allowed to dictate to this government and to wider society.
“As it is, we simply do not have enough gardai policing our streets 24/7, do not have the necessary equipment and are facing an exodus of officers demoralised by the entire situation.”
Daithi Doolan, a local Sinn Fein Cllr, said the incident has “cast a shadow” over a day of “reflection, mourning and sadness.” He told Dublin Live: “My deepest sympathy goes to that family who were burying their son. The actions of some people today in no way represents that family. I also want to wish that garda a speedy recovery, we have to work with the guards to ensure we have safe streets and I hope those involved reflect on their actions for the day’s that’s in it.”
In November last year, a garda was badly injured in the Ballyfermot area in an incident in which two men are now charged and are before the courts. In September, a marked garda patrol vehicle was rammed twice by joyriders in stolen cars on Cherry Orchard Avenue in Ballyfermot.
Last night, gardai remained on high alert in the area. A spokesman said: “This morning, Monday 20th February 2023, Gardaí put in place an information led policing plan in advance of an event scheduled to take place in the Ballyfermot area. During the course of this event a number of incidents of dangerous driving and reckless endangerment were observed by Gardaí.