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Warning From Thurles Garda Station

gardaThurles.Info have received as yet two unconfirmed reports of bag snatching incidents, happening within the Thurles area, over the past couple of weeks.

Although Thurles town has a very low incidence of such behaviour, Thurles Gardaí would like to remind people of a few simple rules in relation to ‘letting their guard down’, particularly in the present economic climate and coming up to the Christmas 2016 period.

Speaking to Sergeant Gerard Harrington at Thurles Garda Station today, Sgt Harrington offers his advice to all shoppers.

(1) Lady drivers please stop the practise of placing handbags on your front passenger car seat. This common practise, particularly, is a huge incentive to thieves lurking in any area. Instead place your handbag and any other valuables out of sight in your car boot and when driving in slow traffic, learn to lock car doors from the inside.  When loading shopping into your car, if approached by strangers or other undesirables, immediately close your car boot until you become fully aware of their true intentions.

(2) Leave purses at home. Use a wallet, secured in a zipped pocket. You have no secure coat pocket and there are other items such as make-up, house keys, mobile phone etc., which you wish to carry on your person; then purchase a bag that will belt around your tummy and which hides such items from constant view.

(3) With evenings becoming darker and the change to ‘Old Time’ now imminent; confine yourself to walking in busy, well lit areas where possible. Remember purse snatchers / handbag snatchers are less likely to strike in such areas, as they don’t wish to be identified. Walk with briskness and with confidence and if possible with a friend.

If you find yourself having to walk alone in an isolated or lightly populated area, be aware and observe those who might pass you or indicate that they may approach you. If you are not seen as vulnerable and well able to give their physical description, they in many cases will avoid contact.

(4) Report suspicious activity. If you suspect that a stranger appears to be lurking in a particular area where they have no known business, contact a manager or security personnel, if in the case of a shopping centre or supermarket. Call Gardaí in the case of trespass witnessed on your own or your neighbours’ private property. After all it is better to report your suspicions and be wrong, than it is to ignore and be robbed or hurt. Your anonymity and confidentiality will always be protected.

(5) Hold handbags and purses tightly and close to your body, particularly when on buses, trains or out walking or shopping.  Ensure your bags latches or zips are fully closed and if possible, wear handbags on your shoulder underneath a coat or jacket. You might be tempted to wear your bag diagonally across your body, e.g. across your neck as well as your shoulder, or loop bag straps around your wrist to prevent it from being easily snatched. While such held in this manner may be seen by thieves as a deterrent, in some cases; do keep in mind that if someone does snatch your bag, a hard yank can actually cause you bodily injury.

(6) Don’t carry any more cash or credit cards than you absolutely need, to undertake your shopping. If you are inclined to carry multiple Credit Cards, remember just one credit card should be sufficient for your needs. Always have quick access to your banks customer service information so that you can immediately report any card stolen. Ask yourself before leaving your home whether the contents of your purse, wallet or handbag are worth receiving an injury for, however minor.

(7) When making / receiving mobile phone calls find a place where you can secure your back, e.g. a wall, shop window and avoid doorways. Stop and place your rear end against the nearest large tree, pillar or wall, before transacting your conversation, with the knowledge that if your valuable iPhone is to be snatched from your grasp; same will at least be within the range of your immediate vision and thus lead to the possible identification or description of your unwelcome attacker.

(8) Remember, no matter what, YOU, as a person are more valuable than your bag, phone or purse. If someone yanks it away from your hands or your shoulder, let it go. It is more important to avoid personal serious injury than to save a handbag. Avoid your initial desire to fight to keep your possessions. Instead try to get a description of your assailant including footwear, hair colour, clothing, height, the number plate and colour / make of any vehicle suspected etc., before contacting Gardaí as soon as possible. Usually such individuals are already known to Gardaí.

(9) Be careful when using Bank or other Automated Teller Machines (ATMs). ATMs are a great convenience, but they can compromise your safety. Use cash machines at bank branches as same are probably the safest bet. Avoid an ATM at the corner of a building. Maintain an awareness of your surroundings throughout your entire transaction and be very wary of people who try to help you. Do not permit people to look over your shoulder, particularly as you enter your PIN number.  Never ever count cash at the machine or while you remain in public view. Wait until you are in your car (doors locked from the inside) or in at least a more secure area. If you do become involved in a confrontation with an assailant who demands your money, simply comply with their wishes.

Sgt Harrington was most anxious to point out that leaflets and advice on such safety protections are available, on a 24 hours basis from Thurles Garda Station, or though your locally appointed community Garda member.

“Thurles Gardaí are always ready and available to discuss matters regarding security and safety to any individual or groupings within the Thurles Garda District”, said Sgt. Harrington.


Major Drug Seizures Across Co. Tipperary

Operation Overwatch – Drugs Operation Tipperary Division – Drugs €1.2 million seized.

Cannabis Sativa

Cannabis sativa

Gardaí in Tipperary have confirmed that an intelligence led Drugs Operation under ‘Operation Overwatch’, was completed across the Tipperary Division between September 26th and today, September 30th 2016.

Gardaí from the Tipperary Divisional Drugs Unit together with Detectives, Uniformed Community Gardaí, including Gardaí from the Garda National Drugs and Organised Crime Bureau and the Garda Dog Unit, all took part in a number of planned drug operations which saw approximately €1.2 million in controlled drugs seizures.

As part of this recent operation a total of 26 locations were searched across the Division, including at least one here on the west side of Thurles town, with 9 suspects arrested for ‘Possession of Drugs for Sale and Supply under Section 15 Misuse of Drugs Act’, which also included 11 detections for ‘Simple Possession Contrary to Section 3 Misuse of Drugs Act 1977-1984’. Further searches took place this morning with additional arrests made.

Gardaí have also confirmed that a total of 34 Penal Warrants and 14 Bench Warrants were executed as part of this operation, with these offenders currently before the District Court.

Three significant drug seizures were made as part of this September 2016 operation and locations are named hereunder:

(1) On Sunday the 25th September 2016, a cannabis grow house was located in Ballykisteen Tipperary with drugs to the value of €7000 seized (analysis pending). One male, aged 26 years, was arrested before being released without charge with a file being prepared for the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP).

(2) On Wednesday 28th September 2016, following this intelligence led operation, a cannabis grow house was located in Nenagh with drugs to the value of €20,000 (analysis pending), seized. One male aged 43 years was arrested and charged, before being remanded on bail to appear at Nenagh District Court on the 14th October 2016 next.

(3) On Wednesday 28th September 2016, following a joint operation between the Tipperary Divisional Drugs Unit, the Garda National Drugs and Organised Crime Bureau; a sophisticated grow house was located in Hollyford, 28.2km or 17.5 miles from Thurles, Co Tipperary. Controlled drugs with an estimated street value of €1.1 million were seized (pending analysis).  As part of this operation two males in their 40’s, were arrested and are currently detained at Thurles and Templemore Garda Stations under the provisions of Section 2 of the Criminal Justice (Drugs Trafficking)  Act 1996, as amended.

The success of this past weeks operation will most definitely have a significant impact in the distribution of controlled drugs and the dismantling of drug related activity across Tipperary Division and indeed further afield.

The aim of Operation Overwatch is to reduce the incidence of Drug Trafficking and other related criminal activity, by supporting communities right across Tipperary and is under the command of Thurles Chief Superintendent Catherine Kehoe, Local District Officers, while co-ordinated by Divisional Detective Inspector Patrick O’Callaghan.

Anyone with information on these or any other crimes should contact their local Garda Station or the Garda Confidential Line on Telephone: 1800 666 111.


Huge Attendance At Thurles Garda Division Open Day

Over 600 post primary school students attended at Thurles Garda station last Wednesday for the Thurles Garda Division’s ‘Open Day for Secondary School.’

This event followed on from the extremely successful Thurles Garda Public Open Day held last September (2015).

Click HERE to view Video hereunder in High Definition.

The event organised by serving Thurles Garda Officer Annette Connolly and supported by Templemore Garda College; Officers and Management serving the Thurles Garda Division, saw officers give up one days leave to return to their workplace to inform, educate and provide a fun day for all the visiting students.

Education on ‘Drugs’; overall ‘Crime Prevention’; ‘Garda Training’; ‘Thurles Text Alert’; ‘Know Your Patch’; ‘AFIS’ (Fingerprinting), and ‘Evidezer’ (Breath Analysis); ‘Communications’ etc were the order of the day; together with information on the dangers of ‘Speed’; the use of ‘Speed Cameras’ (Garda Traffic Unit); ‘Powers of Arrest and Detention’; Equipment used by the Regional Garda Armed Response Unit and the Public Order Unit.

A huge attraction were Officers, with their horses, from the Garda Mounted Unit, together with Officers and their dogs from the Drugs Unit and Public Order Unit.

Irish TV and Radio Tipp FM were also in attendance, so expect to see and hear more on this most positive and informative of events in the weeks ahead.

Congrats to all who took part – Truly this was community education at its very best.


Thurles Garda Station – Open Day For Secondary Schools

Thurles Garda Station Open Day for Secondary Schools – Wednesday 7th September 2016 – Time: 9.30am to 4.00pm.


Garda Annette Connolly

Serving Thurles Garda Officer Annette Connolly reports:

Following on from their extremely successful Public Open Day last September (2015), Thurles Garda Station will again host an ‘Open Day’ pacifically targeting Post Primary School students throughout the Thurles Garda District.  This event will cover the areas Borrisleigh, Templemore, Thurles, Ballingarry, Littleton and Killenaule and will take place next Wednesday September 7th 2016 from 9.30am – 4.00pm. The event will target, in particular, attendances from 4th, 5th and 6th year classes.

“We are anxious to make information freely available to young people who may have an interest in policing, not just as a future career, but those also wishing to obtain a clearer understanding of the true role played by An Garda Síochána in local communities throughout the length and breadth of Ireland,”  stated Garda Connolly.

Solely a Thurles Gardaí organised event; off-duty officers of all ranks will be making themselves available at Thurles Garda Station to provide information and answer the many queries from students regarding the day-to-day demands placed on Irish police in their role as guardians of the peace. They will also be joined, where possible, by persons operating other essential services and with whom our police force liaise, often on an hourly basis, e.g. the Ambulance Service & Fire Brigade etc.

Schools who have already confirmed their wish to be in attendance on the day will include:-  St. Mary’s Templemore; Our Lady’s, Templemore; Templemore College; Scoil Naomh Cualan Borrisleigh; Presentation Secondary School, Ballingarry; St Kevin’s, Littleton; Ursuline Secondary School, Thurles; Presentation Secondary School, Thurles; Coláiste Mhuire Co-Ed, Castlemeadows, Thurles and Thurles C.B.S.

During next Wednesday’s event expect to see members of the Garda Mounted Unit on the streets around Thurles, together with Tipp FM Radio and Irish TV, who will also be in attendance on the day.

As part of the event on Wednesday next, students will receive information on matters pertaining to Crime Prevention; Garda Training; the Garda Reserve; Thurles Text Alert; ‘Know Your Patch’; ‘AFIS’ (Fingerprinting), and ‘Evidezer’ (Breath Analysis), together with many other interesting facts pertaining to the everyday life of a serving Irish police officer.

In attendance also will be members of the Garda Dog Unit; Regional Armed Response Unit; Drugs Unit; Traffic Unit and Public Order Unit.

All in all this very positive event promises to be a most enjoyable and informative experience for the young people in our society.


‘Hit’ On Imprisoned Tipperary Raider

CorcoranA member of the ruthless Dublin gang, who viciously attacked the home of Mark and Emma Corcoran, at Burnchurch, Killenaule, South Tipperary; the former armed with a sawn-off shotgun, a handgun and a machete, has himself been assaulted in prison.

Mr Donal O’Hara, aged 24, had 19 previous convictions before being jailed for five years. The combined involved criminal gang in this case, who had more than 300 combined convictions, were imprisoned for a total of 72 years, back in October 2015.

In a recent prison attack, Mr O’Hara, is understood to have had the tendons in his arm severed, while being beaten with metal poles. Same violent attack is understood to have been carried out in retaliation for an attack on an unnamed female. From investigations carried out by the authorities; it is believed that the attack was instigated by some of Mr O’Hara’s former associates, who are believed to have initiated a “€5,000 hit” on Mr O’Hara.

Mr Donal O’Hara then aged 21, with an address at Glin Park, Coolock, Dublin 17; together with Mr Dean Byrne aged 21 of Cabra Park, Dublin 7, Mr Patrick Gately, aged 26 of Primrose Grove, Darndale, Dublin 17; Mr John Joyce aged 19, of The Donaghies, Donaghmede, Dublin; Mr Patrick Joyce aged 21, of Beaumont Hall, Beaumont Woods, Dublin 9;  Mr Thomas Flynn aged 19, of Moatview Avenue, Coolock, Dublin 17 and Mr Michael McDonagh aged 22, of Tara Lawns, Belcamp Lane, Coolock, Dublin 17; sought cash and valuables when they burst into the Corcoran family’s home on November 21st 2013; threatening to kill their three young kids, aged eight, six and two.

A quick thinking Mrs Corcoran managed to dial 999, and leave her mobile phone switched on for some seven minutes, thus allowing Gardaí to eavesdrop on what was happening, as this crime progressed. During the incident Mr Corcoran was brutally assaulted and suffered a fractured eye socket and a broken nose.

Mr O’Hara has now been placed under protective custody while in prison.