Deeply shocked  | 

Two teen boys hailed as heroes after foiling daylight attack on girl (16) in Cork

The boy was taken to a Cork hospital to have the wound treated and stitched

The town centre of Fermoy, Cork (Photo: Google Maps)

Ralph Riegel

Two teenage boys were hailed as heroes for bravely going to the aid of a 16-year-old girl who was the target of a brutal daylight attack in a Cork town.

The two teens managed to foil the attack but one of them was injured when a bottle was apparently broken over his head by the attacker as the teen tried to defend the young girl.

A man in his 30s was later arrested by Fermoy Gardaí in Cork in connection with the attack which occurred just metres from the church and three major schools in the busy town.

Councillor Noel McCarthy, a Fermoy businessman, hailed the two young teens as heroes for their courageous actions.

"I want to compliment them because, but for them, this attack could have been much worse," he said.

"They are brave young men and thank God they were nearby to go to the girl's aid.

"Everyone is shocked by this attack. It happened in the middle of the day and just metres from busy town streets, not to mention the church and local schools."

Councillor McCarthy said locals were deeply shocked by the nature of the attack on such a young girl - and the fact it followed several other shocking attacks on women across Ireland.

Locals admitted they were appalled by the savagery, timing and location of the attack.

"You'd be worried that nowhere is safe anymore," one local woman said.

"This happened within sight of the church - what kind of a world is it now, at all."

Fermoy Gardaí continue to question a man in his 30s about the attack.

The teenage girl was attacked as she was walking alone in the town centre around 1.20pm on Monday.

It is understood she was walking to the town centre to meet friends for lunch.

One source said that the attack is being treated as potentially having a sexual motivation.

After being attacked by the man, the girl struggled and screamed for help.

Two teenage boys were nearby and were alerted by the girl's desperate cries for help.

They went to investigate and were shocked to come upon the attack.

Both teens bravely went to help the girl - and were immediately attacked by the older male who had targeted the girl.

After a brief scuffle with the two courageous rescuers, the attacker then fled the scene on foot.

One of the brave teens who had gone to the aid of the girl suffered a cut-type injury.

Gardai believe the teen may have been struck with a bottle on the head by the attacker before he fled.

The boy was taken to a Cork hospital to have the wound treated and stitched. The injury is not described as serious.

Gardaí are now examining CCTV security camera footage from around Fermoy town centre in a bid to identify the precise movements of the attacker.

Fermoy Gardaí later arrested a man in his 30s in connection with the incident.

"Gardaí are investigating an alleged assault that occurred at approximately 1:20pm (on Monday) afternoon, in Fermoy, Co. Cork," a garda spokesperson said.

"A man in his 30s has been arrested in relation to this incident and he is currently being detained under the provisions of Section 4 of the Criminal Justice Act 1984 at Fermoy Garda station.

"Investigations are ongoing."

The teenage girl, who is understood to be from the locality, was said to be deeply shocked and traumatised by her ordeal.

She is set to receive counselling support over the incident.

Gardaí have appealed for anyone who spotted suspicious activity in Fermoy town on Monday afternoon to contact them.

It is the latest in a shocking series of attacks on women across Ireland over recent months.

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