Man confronted while in the act of tearing down 'Yes' campaign posters in Limerick
The act of vandalism was captured by a local businessman.
A Limerick man has been caught on video tearing down a series of referendum posters in the city.
Filmed by a local artist and businessman, Kevin Kiley Jr., the footage clearly showed the man removing four posters, belonging to the Socialist Feminist Movement organisation Rosa, and which state "Stop Shaming Women".
The incident took place on Tuesday morning (17 April) at approximately 8am on Thomas Street in Limerick.
In the video, Kiely can be seen confronting the man as he took down one poster, while a second appeared to have been already removed.
"Do you disagree about stopping shaming women in 2018?" Kiely asks at the beginning of the video.
When the man does not respond, Kiely says: "Go on, I'll put you on the internet and you can tell the internet why you took them down."
The man replies "It's none of your business" before attempting to cover the camera and demanding that Kiely stop following him.
Noting that the man's actions could constitute assault, Kiely went on to say: "You're in a public place. You just did something that is the destruction of somebody else's property and I filmed you."
Afterwards, the man took down two more posters by Augustinian Lane.
Speaking to JOE, Kevin Kiely Jr. said: "I do group runs from Limerick City Centre to my restaurant, and when I returned, I saw this man tearing down posters and throwing them in the street.
"I saw a few women too who were passing by on their way to work. They were intimidated by his behaviour, so I got some cable ties to rehang them.
"I then noticed the guy was in the coffee shop, which I usually go to for my coffee. So I went to Starbucks instead, ordered some coffee and noticed that he was waiting for me to disappear, before doing it again."
Noting that he intends to report the incident to Gardaí, he went on to say: "The wider issue for me is censorship and an attempt to reduce the Yes campaign. This, I think, deserves a real conversation."
Commenting on the incident to JOE, Rita Harrold of Rosa said: "We are used to these tactics from anti-abortion campaigners.
"They try to silence women and minimise our voice in society. This is still happening.
"We know that the vast majority don't support those values, we know they trust women in society."
Adding that each poster costs €6, she said: "Also the effort of the campaigners who volunteer to put them up is of equal importance to us."