A worrying rise in drunkenness incidents has contributed to a 15% hike in assaults in county Tipperary so far this year with the Clonmel and Tipperary Town Garda Districts experiencing the biggest surge in these crimes.
That was the message Tipperary Garda Chief Superintendent Derek Smart gave to a meeting of Tipperary’s Joint Policing Committee last Friday where he presented a report on crime trends in the county over the first nine months of this year.
He said there has been a “huge increase” in drunkenness offences where people were becoming “riled up” after getting drunk and getting involved in assault incidents.
“We are dealing with a lot of people who are intoxicated and that is leading to a lot of incidents in our towns, villages and the county.
“That is the thing causing assaults to increase,” he told the JPC meeting held via Zoom.
He outlined that overall the number of assaults reported to gardaí across the county rose by 15% since January with 287 assault crimes reported compared to 249 over the same period last year.
Assaults causing harm incidents rose marginally by 3% from 79 to 81 but the number of minor assaults reported jumped by just over one fifth (21%) from 170 to 206.
Clonmel Garda District that encompasses Carrick-on-Suir and Fethard as well as Clonmel town, experienced the greatest increase in reported assaults in the county.
There were 127 assaults reported to gardaí in this district compared to 93 for the same period last year. This represents an overall rise of 37% in assault incidents.
The second highest increase was in the Tipperary Garda District where there was a 36% rise in assaults from 22 to 30 followed by the Thurles Garda District which reported a 28% increase.
In contrast, there was a dramatic 21% drop in assault incidents from 39 to 31 reported in Cahir Garda District that includes Cashel as well as Cahir town.
And there was a 15% fall in these crimes in Nenagh Garda District.
Another positive trend was an 8% increase in assault crime detections since the start of the year with 206 detections in the county compared to 170 last year.
Elsewhere in his presentation, the Garda Chief reported an overall 8% hike in the number of crimes against the person offences reported to gardaí in the county rising from 346 in the first nine months last year to 372 so far this year.
These range from murder and murder threats, to all assaults, harrassment, child abandonment, neglect or abuse. In the south of the county, Tipperary Garda District experienced a significant 29% increase in these offences from 28 to 36 while there was a 21% surge in these offences in Clonmel Garda District rising from 134 incidents last to 162 so far this year Cahir Garda District bucked this trend by experiencing a 23% reduction in crimes against the person from 53 to 41 cases.
Tipperary Garda Division, achieved a 20% increase in detections of these crimes, which translates to 254 detections so far this year compared to 211 over the same period last year.
Chief Supt Smart also reported a 6.75% rise in domestic abuse incidents that range from assaults and breaches of barring, protection and safety orders to domestic disputes where no offence is disclosed.
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