Gardaí reassure locals over closure
Gardaí have moved to reassure Limerick people living in an area that has witnessed some of the most violent crime in the country that the closure of the local Garda station will not mean a “return to the bad old days”.
Former mayor of Limerick Cllr John Gilligan has criticised the closure of Mary Street Garda station in the city as a “retrograde step”, which he fears will have disastrous consequences.
The station is located alongside one of Limerick’s regeneration areas.
‘Bordering on stupidity’
Speaking at a meeting in King’s Island Community Centre yesterday where gardaí outlined the new policing plan for the areas affected by the closure, Mr Gilligan described the move as “bordering on stupidity”.
Mary Street Garda station, which has been serving the people of the inner city area since the foundation of the State, will close this Thursday along with five stations in rural parts of Co Limerick, as part of a cost-cutting plan. In all, nearly 100 stations are closing around the country.
Locals have been assured service levels will not be changed and the 10 community garda assigned to the area will remain.
However, Mr Gilligan said the “Garda retreat from the inner city is a worrying development”.
Speaking at yesterday’s meeting, Chief Supt Dave Sheahan confirmed the force in Limerick had lost 40 members since the beginning of 2011, bringing numbers in the region down to 560.
He reassured locals in King’s Island he intended to maintain community policing in the area. “I do not want this place to go back to anything like what it was in the bad old days,” he said.