for the second time in as many months a politican has been robbed in Laois.
Thieves broke into the home of Cllr Denis O’Meara in a pre-Christmas robbery, and took a large amount of cash after searching every room.
Cllr O’Meara said that his wife Marian were out of their Harbour Street house at the time of the robbery, paying a visit to their son’s house.
“It happened between 8.30pm and 10.45pm, I’d say the house was being watched,” Cllr O’Meara told the Leinster Express.
The thieves jemmied open the front door of the terraced house and turned off a radio so they could hear if someone was coming back. They then rifled through bags and presses. €820 in cash that the couple were planning to share amonst their grandchildren for new outfits for Christmas.
“They even took loose change out of Marian’s purse,” Cllr O’Meara said, adding that his wife is still now fearful of being at home on her own.
When they came home and discovered the break-in, the couple rang Mountmellick Garda Station, which switched through to the Portlaoise station.
Though it was the night of Sgt Gerry Cawley’s retirement party, Cllr O’Meara was glad to report that four gardaí arrived quickly to the house.
“It felt like an eternity though,” he added.
A forensic investigation was carried out to check for fingerprints. The technician carrying out his tests told Denis he had 16 other incidents to investigate that week, in the Killeigh and Tullamore areas.
“It is prevalent, but he told us a good guard dog is better than any alarm,” Cllr O’Meara said.
Now with a new door installed and plans for a house alarm, the O’Meara’s are hoping the robbery was a one-off incident. The councillor is part of a local committee who provide alarm buttons to elderly people in case of robberies or emergencies.
The councillor said he has heard nothing from Gardaí about the investigation since the crime happened, two months ago.
Late last year Cllr Ray Cribbin was robbed at knifepoint in Portlarington