Rise in rape, domestic abuse and drug seizures in Cork

Rise in rape, domestic abuse and drug seizures in Cork

Chief Superintendent Barry McPolin said that the drug and crime units had received increased personnel in the last six months, which has positively influenced this high number of seizures. Pic Daragh Mc Sweeney/Provision

Drug seizures have soared, rape has increased in the city and domestic abuse has risen across Cork, while assaults have declined across the city and county. 

That is according to new Garda figures relating to the period from January to October 2020. 

The data, published at the Cork County joint policing committee (JPC) meeting, show over €3m worth of drugs has been seized in Cork since January.

Gardaí say cannabis was the number one illegal substance seized, followed by heroin and cocaine.

In the city cases of possession of drugs for sale or supply rose from 154 to 268 and possession of drugs for personal use went from 713 to 936.

In Cork North, sale or supply incidents went from 71 to 100 and possession of drugs for personal use went from 399 to 464. 

In West Cork sale and supply cases almost doubled from 41 to 81 and personal use cases actually dropped from 227 to 185.

Chief Superintendent Barry McPolin said that the drug and crime units had received increased personnel in the last six months, which has positively influenced this high number of seizures.

Rape cases increased in the city, with 40 cases reported between January and October compared to 32 for the same time period last year. 

Sexual assault dropped from 105 incidents to 73 in the city.

Domestic abuse incidents increased significantly across the three Cork districts, with 1,151 cases reported in the city, a 14% increase, 548 in Cork North a 13% increase and a 28% increase in the West with a total of 287 incidents meaning there was a total of 1,986 domestic abuse cases in Cork from January to October.

Chief Superintendent Tom Myers said it was important to assure anyone who wanted to come forward with a domestic violence complaint that their situation would be treated professionally and they would be given information in relation to other supports that are available to them also.

“The pandemic has been a very challenging time for gardaí. We have had a lot of demands placed on us. Domestic violence is a cause for concern. We are there to assist.

“When guards are called to a domestic abuse case there is contact from our victims' office within 24 hours and a call back from the investigating guard within seven days, advising them on the barring orders available before the courts.

"There is a lot of work going on in relation to domestic abuse, behind the scenes. I want to assure them. We are at the end of the phone 24/7 and we will give them the best advice we possibly can to try and reassure them that they can be safe in their homes.” 

Assaults declined considerably in all three districts, with assaults causing harm in the city dropping from 212 to 156, 108 to 58 in Cork North and 63 to 53 in West Cork.

Minor assaults dropped from 775 to 641 in the city, 332 to 250 in Cork North and 164 to 146 in West Cork.

In terms of road safety 19 fatalities in 18 traffic incidents.

Commenting on the figures, Sinn Féin TD Thomas Gould said some of the statistics were “extremely worrying.” 

“There were 1,986 reports of domestic abuse across the county of Cork this year. That is an extremely worrying statistic and highlights the impact Covid-19 has had on those experiencing domestic violence. I would hope that funding is made available to further address this serious issue."

He said that in Cork city and county are working tirelessly during the pandemic. 

"They need adequate resources and infrastructure to allow them to do their jobs. I would again call on the government to increase community garda numbers in Cork city.” 

Mr Gould said he would be working in close proximity with the force going forward to work on collaborating the information and skillsets of the numerous organisations in the city.

“Positively, the gardaí have agreed to liaise with me on an anti-social behaviour Taskforce which would see relevant organisations coming together weekly to identify anti-social behaviour hotspots. I look forward to working with the Gardai on this issue.”

More in this section

Sponsored Content

summersoaplogosml

Catch up on the latest episode of Annie May and the Hit Brigade written and read by  Mahito Indi Henderson.

Add Echolive.ie to your home screen - easy access to Cork news, views, sport and more