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fight risk Dublin councillor says 'someone will be killed' as teen gangs film street assaults

It has been reported that since before Christmas, gangs of young people had been carrying out random assaults in the Cabra area and filming them.

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A Cork TD says it is only a matter of time before someone is 'severely hurt or even worse'. FILE PHOTO

A Cork TD says it is only a matter of time before someone is 'severely hurt or even worse'. FILE PHOTO

A Cork TD says it is only a matter of time before someone is 'severely hurt or even worse'. FILE PHOTO

A local Dublin councillor has warned that it is only a matter of time before someone is killed as gangs of teenagers attack each other and post the footage on social media in a bid to outdo each other.

It has been reported that since before Christmas, gangs of young people had been carrying out random assaults in the Cabra area and filming them.

However, the incidents have become more serious in recent weeks and are being organised as gangs try to "outdo" each other.

There have already been a number of serious incidents, according to Sinn Féin’s Séamas McGrattan who is on Cabra’s Local Policing Committee, with some of the victims ending up in hospital.

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Sinn Féin’s Séamas McGrattan

Sinn Féin’s Séamas McGrattan

Sinn Féin’s Séamas McGrattan

“It is escalating week by week,” Cllr McGrattan told sundayworld.com. “We’re trying to get awareness out there, particularly among the parents and the kids themselves, of the consequences of these attacks for everyone involved."

Cllr McGrattan said the assaults had been shared on social media platforms such as TikTok where various gangs then “call-out” each other to provoke further attacks.

“I initially thought it was just a Cabra-Finglas thing but it’s much wider, it’s right across the city," he said.

“They film these attacks on each other and then post them online. My concern is that one gang has to outdo the other in every video that’s posted, so there’s a serious risk that this is getting worse."

Cllr McGrattan said he was aware of the issue in the Cabra area since before Christmas but that the gardaí had taken action.

“In fairness to the guards, they put out patrols and checkpoints on the roads between Cabra and Finglas and it calmed down for a while," he added.

“But since Christmas it’s been happening in other areas like Coolock. There is a random nature to some of it but some are organised.”

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The Northside councillor added that he was aware of one young man who ended up in a coma in hospital but he fears there could be more serious repercussions.

“They’re using hammers and bats," he said, “but I don't think these kids realise the nature of how even one punch can destroy lives, both for the person throwing it and for the person receiving it.

A leaflet was sent out around the local Cabra area by the local policing committee warning parents about the attacks as part of the awareness campaign.

“A lot of people weren't even aware that this was going on, as it doesn’t take place in busy streets but is more likely to be organised on side roads," he added.

“But the campaign is working. Other local groups and youth services are getting involved so it has had some effect. I think that during the lockdown with many of these places closed the kids had nowhere to go, so it's just trying to get them back on track.

"There is a small cohort and for them the only outcome is the courts. But it’s the ones on the periphery who we’re trying to help.

“Mostly it's secondary school age kids who are involved, but in one instance there were kids there as young as nine.

"These are the ones who would get caught up in this very simply, by trying to try to impress the other boys, and they wouldn’t have any inkling of how serious this could turn out.

“I think it's only a matter of time that somebody could die because, as I say, the nature of outdoing each other is very dangerous. And with the nature of head injuries, all it takes is a serious belt and one unlucky blow."

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