ALCOHOL proved a big problem in Tullamore over the Festive season. On New Year's Eve night alone there were ten arrests for public order.
On St Stephen's night there were twelve arrests for public order incidents including a number of assaults. In one case a youth was pushed through a chemist's window, receiving a bad gash to his face.
On Christmas night there were five arrests for public order and assault incidents. The same night a Polish national was arrested at 5am wearing a balaclava, full combat gear and carrying a replica automatic rifle outside Tullamore Garda Station.
Garda in Tullamore said a growing problem is people leaving licensed premises with glasses and bottles. These, they said, can become weapons and have done over the Christmas period.
Garda outlined there were a lot of drunken public order incidents over the festive period, many of which resulted in assaults.
Meanwhile Garda are appealing to be people to be extra vigilant with opportunistic crime on the rise. During the cold snap people were posing as council workers in order to gain access to and rob from people's homes. On asking the owners to check if taps are working, they quickly enter the premises and take items before the owner has returned to the door.
Garda said old people in particular are very vulnerable as they may not often ask for ID. One such incident happened only last Thursday where two people had items stolen from their home in O'Molloy Street after answering the door to one of these thieves.
As well as this, farm yards and rural areas are becoming the targets of opportunistic thieves. People in rural areas are being asked to ensure their property is secured properly and to report any suspicious vehicles loitering around the area.