Gardaí are urging people in north Longford to be vigilant following a rise in burglaries.
Homeowners in the northern half of the county are being urged to exercise increased vigilance following a near 50 per cent rise in burglaries.
Latest figures show a 43 per cent rise in break-ins across the Granard Garda District during the first six months of the year.
They include nine burglaries, a number of which gardaí are continuing to investigate the circumstances behind.
Inspector Padraig Jones said efforts to pinpoint an exact cause behind the thefts was proving onerous as he emphasised the important role members of the public can play in the fight against crime.
“It is significant,” he said, when addressing the rise in burglaries.
“They do seem to be sporadic and there doesn’t seem to be a pattern to them.
“It is something we (gardaí) are focusing a lot of our efforts on.”
His comments were relayed to elected members of a Joint Policing Committee (JPC) last week.
Inspector Jones said that, as a result, detection rates had likewise incurred an upward trend with a string of suspects currently before the courts.
One area he noted which had come in for particular garda attention was the greater Edgeworthstown area.
In response to those revelations, Cllr Martin Mulleady said it was imperative locals remained mindful of any suspicious activity in their area and reported it to the Gardaí.
“Burglary is a big thing and I know in our area there was a burglary (in Drumlish) at the Centra Store.
“That was a very sophisticated burglary last weekend. People just need to be aware and vigilant of strange vehicles going down roads, especially vans,” he said.
Cllr Paul Ross was another to speak out and express his unease at the spike in break-ins.
In particular, he said there was an urgent and pressing need for additional garda resources to be directed to Edgeworthstown.
Inspector Jones said one of the reasons why the mid Longford town did not possess a 24 hour policing presence was because of its ‘sub district’ classification.
That said, the garda inspector defended the Gardaí’s record, when it came to combating crime.
“There has always been a policing presence there and it is robust and strong,” he said, adding regional resources had been deployed in Edgeworthstown only the week previously. Cllr Peggy Nolan said one way of underpinning that commitment was by issuing a written letter to Garda Commissioner Noírín O’Sullivan calling for additional resources to be allocated to Longford.