heavy artillery | 

Councillors warn that escalating feud in Galway City suburb will lead to deaths

‘If we don't stop this, what's going to happen is, we're going to have fatalities and we're going to have ghettos’

In May Cllr Cheevers posted pictures of burnt out cars in the same estate

Neil Fetherstonhaugh

An escalating feud in a Galway City suburb is going to lead to deaths, a local councillor has warned, following an arson attack on a house early this week.

Cllr Alan Cheevers has said the last few months have been incredibly frightening for the local residents of Doughiska.

Following the latest serious arson attack that was carried out in Garran Ard, which caused significant damage to a home, Cllr Cheevers said the situation has to be contained immediately.

We need to get heavy on this,” he told Galway Talks. “We need to do what they did in South hill. We need to bring in the heavy artillery and go (after) these guys and every move they make and stop this.

“Because if we don't stop this, what's going to happen is, we're going to have fatalities and we're going to have ghettos. And we don't need this in our city.”

Councillor Noel Larkin added that gardaí have a good idea who’s responsible and that special forces are needed to tackle the problem.

“It’s like driving with the handbrake on, you have to be so careful what you say,” he said. “Whereas we know most of the culprits involved here. And the gardai probably know them as well.

“(It’s) getting very hard to bring them to justice (but) as Alan said there, I think we need the special forces to come in here and stamp this out immediately and don't wait for it to escalate anymore.”

In May, Cllr Cheevers posted pictures that showed the devastating aftermath of an arson attack in the quiet Galway housing estate that left three cars burnt out.

Gardai later launched an investigation after the early morning incident that occurred in the same Garrán Árd estate in Doughishka.

The images showed the extent of the damage done in the estate with melted tarmac and scorched trees surrounding the burnt areas where the cars had been parked.

Cllr Cheevers said local residents had been left “worried, shocked and scared” in the wake of the terrifying incident.

“Basically there were three cars burnt out” he told sundayworld.com at the time. "It’s very serious. The cars belonged to the residents of the adjoining properties.

"They have been left very worried, shocked and scared. It happened at 2am so everyone was in bed. They then woke up to these engulfing flames outside their windows.

"And there has been a fair bit of damage done as well, Cllr Cheevers added. "The flames spread right across the footpath path. Although It could have been lot worse.

Cllr Cheevers revealed that there had been spate of arson attacks in Galway city over a period of the previous six months.

There was a similar incident in the same estate last January when a car was burnt out. There was another last year when two properties were attacked nearby.

"I’ve raised the matter with the Garda superintendent for the area I represent, East Galway, and to be fair the gardai have done all they can with extra patrols and resources for the area, to monitor the situation as best they can.

"But this situation, where someone has come along and set three cars on fire, you can’t account for that.

The gardai are doing a live investigation and have brought the cars away for a forensic examination. So we’ll see what comes out of that.”

A statement from An Garda Siochana confirmed they were investigating the incident.

"Gardaí are investigating an incident of criminal damage by fire that occurred at Garran Ard, Doughiska, County Galway at approximately 2am on Monday 10th of May 2022," it reads.

"A number of vehicles were damaged during this incident.

"investigations are ongoing."

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