Thursday, 5 July 2012

Questions (126)

Mattie McGrath

Question:

126 Deputy Mattie McGrath asked the Minister for Justice and Equality the number of gardaí that are based in Clonmel Garda station, County Tipperary; the number of gardaí that have been based in Clonmel Garda station every year for the past 10 years; the current ratio of gardaí per population of Clonmel; the way this compares with other jurisdictions; the further way the garda per population rate of Clonmel compares to the garda per population rate of Thurles, County Tipperary; if the level of crime has increased in Clonmel over the past ten years; the way this relates to the reduction in garda numbers in Clonmel; if the level of crime has increased in Thurles over the past 10 years; the further way this relates to the Garda numbers in Thurles; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [32906/12]

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Written answers (Question to Minister for Justice and Equality)

The Deputy will be aware that the Commissioner is responsible for the detailed allocation of resources, including personnel, throughout the organisation and I have no function in the matter.

I have been informed by the Garda Commissioner that the personnel strength of Clonmel Garda Station on 31 December 2002 to 2011 and on 31 May 2012, the latest date for which figures are readily available, was as set out in the table hereunder:

2002

2003

2004

2005

2006

2007

2008

2009

2010

2011

2012

39

40

69

41

48

51

52

55

51

52

47

The personnel strength of Thurles Garda Station on 31 May 2012 was 75. Both Thurles Garda Station and Clonmel Garda Station form part of the Tipperary Garda Division. The personnel strength of Tipperary Garda Division on the same date was 375. There are also 31 Garda Reserves and 35 Civilians attached to the Tipperary Garda Division. These resources are augmented, when appropriate, by Gardaí from national units such as the Garda National Drug Unit and the National Bureau of Criminal Investigation.

The population of the Clonmel and Thurles areas are available from the Central Statistics Office website at www.cso.ie. The following table shows selected crime statistics for the Tipperary Garda Division which are drawn from information which is also available on the CSO web site.

Selected Crime Statistics for Tipperary Garda Division — Source CSO Annual Reports

2004

2005

2006

2007

2008

2009

2010

2011

2012*

Homicide offences

2

2

3

10

5

5

1

2

1

Sexual offences

40

109

61

37

40

48

93

57

15

Attempts/threats to murder, assaults,harassments and related offences

450

473

486

539

613

571

487

510

124

Robbery, extortion and hijacking offences

13

18

15

16

25

29

21

23

13

Burglary and related offences

598

741

715

584

599

677

603

742

197

Theft and related offences

1,275

1,185

1,338

1,416

1,398

1,389

1,578

1,376

368

Public order and other social code offences

1,782

2,021

2,372

2,529

1,673

1,624

1,551

1,367

287

*For 2012 statistics are only for the first quarter.

The Garda Síochána Act 2005 makes provision for the compilation and publication of crime statistics by the Central Statistics Office, as the national statistical agency, and the CSO has established a dedicated unit for this purpose. I have requested the CSO to provide statistics directly to the Deputy.

The allocation of resources is constantly monitored by local Garda management in the context of crime trends, policing needs and other operational strategies in place on a district, divisional and regional level. Tipperary Garda Division will be subject to this same level of monitoring to ensure that optimum use is made of Garda resources and the best possible Garda service is provided to the public.