Gardaí Commissioner defends use of riot shields to disperse crowds in Dublin City Centre 2 weeks ago

Gardaí Commissioner defends use of riot shields to disperse crowds in Dublin City Centre

"We've had three members of An Garda Síochana injured over this weekend, and I will not tolerate that."

Assistant Commissioner Anne Marie Cagney has defended the use of riot shields to disperse crowds in Dublin City Centre on Saturday night.

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Cagney told Newstalk reporters at a press conference on Sunday morning that the use of the shields was necessary to protect officers during Saturday night's unrest.

Last night saw Gardaí equipped with shield riot gear disperse crowds in the city, however, An Garda Síochana said that batons were not used.

She said: "Our response throughout the course of our policing activities has been a graduated response.

"Last night's response is part of a defensive response we put in place to protect our members. We've had three members of An Garda Síochana injured over this weekend, and I will not tolerate that.

"Those shields will provide that additional protection for our members."

On Saturday, 5 June, 19 people were arrested for public order offences as Gardaí dispersed crowds in Dublin City Centre.

Between approximately 7pm and 9pm Gardaí dispersed crowds from Stephen’s Green, Temple Bar and South William Street.

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In total, 19 people were arrested for public order offences in Dublin City Centre, including two juveniles who were released and referred for Juvenile Diversion Programme.

Six persons received the Adult Caution, one person was released pending a summons for public order offences, while 10 people were charged with public order offences and will appear in court at a later date.

Gardaí said in a statement to JOE: "Large crowds of people gathered throughout Dublin City Centre with the vast majority of persons socialising responsibly and enjoying outdoor activity."

"However, An Garda Síochána encountered and engaged with a smaller group which was persistently involved in antisocial behaviour and public disorder."

A Gardaí spokesperson added that members of An Garda Síochána "came under attack from glass bottles at various locations" throughout the evening.

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A number of criminal damage incidents also occurred including a bin being set on fire on South William Street.

One person, who was not a member of a group partaking in any public disorder incidents, was assaulted and taken to hospital.

Two members of An Garda Síochána were injured and received treatment while one Garda Patrol Vehicle was damaged.