Drugs still a problem for Portlaoise

Drugs continue to be a problem in Portlaoise, according to the local Superintendent.

Drugs continue to be a problem in Portlaoise, according to the local Superintendent.

According to Superintendent Yvonne Lundon there were 19 arrests for sale or supply of drugs and 26 arrests for possession.

She told the Portlaoise Town Joint Policing Committee that a significant number of drug dealers had come to their attention in early spring.

“They have been prosecuted through the courts and were obligated to leave Portlaoise. But drugs is a serious problem for society, not just Portlaoise,” the Superintendent said.

There was 55 incidents of public order in Portlaoise during the months June, July and August - an increase of ten from the previous three months. These incidents included being drunk, anti-social behaviour and threatening and abusive behaviour.

There was also seven incidents of trespassing on private property over the summer months.

“There was a total of 29 burglaries and 143 thefts which includes theft from the person, fuel, tools,” she said.

There was also an increase of fourteen incidents of criminal damage, bringing the total for the three months over the summer to 75. However, the superintendent said while this figure seemed high, some incidents were minor.

“This three month period was also the summer holidays for the teenagers, which would account for the increase, but a lot were minor offences,” Supt Lundon said.

Mountain bike patrols are continuing in the town, while beggars are cautioned and some prosecuted.

The Superintendent reported a small number of crimes against the elderly, but said she was satisfied they were not being overtly targeted but once again reminded people to check in on vulnerable neighbours, especially during the winter months.

She said there was a similar amount of drink driving offences over the summer months as there had been in the previous three months, and commended people for being more cognisance of not driving while over the limit.

The Supt admitted that their resources were declining, but said this was a political problen.

“I don’t think people understand or appreciate the amount of calls we receive. All calls are responded to as quickly as we can,” she said.