‘Upsurge’ of robberies in Portlaoise

There is an “upsurge” of robberies in Portlaoise according to Laois’ most senior Garda.

There is an “upsurge” of robberies in Portlaoise according to Laois’ most senior Garda.

Chief Superintendent John Scanlan told last week’s Laois County Joint Policing Committee meeting in response to councillors who claimed that crime in rural areas is increasing since the closure of Garda stations throughout the county.

“We’re seeing an upsurge of robberies, all a feature of Portlaoise. We’re constantly striving to provide a service in the rural community. I personally met those in these communities and appointed them a named guard. There is no point in me hiding behind figures. I have what I have and I won’t have any more (gardaí),” he said.

The garda was speaking in relation to property crime in Laois for the third quarter of 2013 (July, August and September), which show that total property crime has risen by 21% from 415 incidents to 528 incidents since the third quarter of 2012.

All property crime categories, apart from robbery of an establishment and burglary (non-aggravated), have risen significantly since the same time period last year.

Theft from shops rise by half from 37 incidents in the third quarter of 2012 to 71 for the same time this year.