Investigation | 

House and GAA grounds sealed off as gardaí investigate alleged sex assaults in Sligo

The two girls, aged in their mid-teens, reported that they were seriously sexually assaulted sometime between 8pm and 10pm.

Aerial view of the reovated Sligo Garda Station on Pearse Road.

Robin Schiller

GARDAÍ are investigating if more than one suspect was involved in the sexual assaults of two teenage girls over the weekend.

Specialist gardaí have been brought in to assist the investigation because of the ages of the two juveniles who were attacked in Sligo on Saturday night.

A Gaelic grounds and a house were sealed off as potential crime scenes after the assaults near Sligo town.

The two girls, aged in their mid-teens, reported that they were seriously sexually assaulted sometime between 8pm and 10pm.

Sources said that at this stage, it is being investigated if more than one male was involved in the attacks.

No arrests have yet been made by gardaí but investigators have been making progress with their inquiries.

The two teenagers were out socialising earlier that day before being assaulted.

The grounds at St Mary's GAA club in Ballydoogan were cordoned off over the weekend, as well as a property nearby.

The two scenes have been forensically examined by gardaí, while the local area has also been canvassed for CCTV footage.

An incident room has been established at Sligo garda station and a senior investigating officer has been appointed to oversee the inquiry.

Detectives from the Divisional Protective Services Unit (DPSU), which specialises in dealing with child victims, are also assisting the investigation.

This unit includes specialist garda interviewers, who are involved due to the ages of the complainants.

The DPSU was recently established in the county as part of a national roll-out by gardaí to have a dedicated unit in each garda division.

Gardaí are continuing to appeal for any witnesses who were in the area on Saturday night, or anyone who has any information in relation to the incidents, to contact them.

In particular, they are asking for anyone who was in the Ballydoogan, Oakfield and Maugheraboy areas of Sligo to make contact with them. A garda spokesman said they are appealing for people who noticed "any activity which caught their attention, whether they think it may be relevant or not."

"Any road users who may have been travelling through these areas and who may have dash-cam footage is also asked to make this available to gardaí," the spokesman added.

An appeal had also been made for a taxi driver working in Sligo that night to contact gardaí. This taxi driver has since been in touch with investigators.

"Anyone with any information in relation to this matter is asked to contact Sligo Garda Station on 071 915700, the Garda Confidential Line on 1800 666 111 or any garda station," said the garda spokesman.

He added that investigations into "a number of alleged assaults" are ongoing.

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