‘Living nightmare’ of Newcastle West residents ends as three men barred from council estates

Gerard Fitzgibbon

Reporter:

Gerard Fitzgibbon

BARRING orders excluding three men from estates in Newcastle West – the first of their kind ever secured in county Limerick – were complied with without incident over Christmas, gardai have confirmed.

BARRING orders excluding three men from estates in Newcastle West – the first of their kind ever secured in county Limerick – were complied with without incident over Christmas, gardai have confirmed.

Last week Limerick County Council succeeded in having 20-year-old Dermot Ryan, his 31-year-old brother John Ryan and 29-year-old Thomas McCarthy barred from entering both the Castleview and Sharwood estates in Newcastle West for a period of three years.

An application to also have Dan McCarthy, 23, barred from both estates was adjourned until December 14, 2012.

Gardai confirmed this Wednesday that they have received no reports of the orders being breached so far this Christmas. Thomas McCarthy and John Ryan are both currently serving prison sentences.

Judge Mary O’Halloran heard last Thursday that local residents have endured “a living nightmare” in recent years due to rampant anti-social behaviour.

The applications to exclude John Ryan, of Sharwood and Thomas McCarthy, of Castleview were agreed on consent, while evidence was heard in the application against Dermot Ryan, who was not present in court.

Seamus Hayes, housing services officer with Limerick County Council, said that Dermot Ryan, also with an address in Sharwood, has been the subject of “a history of complaints of anti-social behaviour... since 2007”.

He said that in this time, the council have received several oral and written complaints from residents about Dermot Ryan. Mr Hayes read a section of one such letter, from a resident, who said: “I feel like a prisoner in my own home. Dermot Ryan has made my life a living nightmare”

Mr Hayes said that the council “doesn’t make this decision lightly”, but considers it its “duty” to protect other tenants living in both estates.

Sgt Frank Downes of Newcastle West Garda Station said that Dermot Ryan has a total of 43 previous convictions and has a history of disorderly conduct.

Sgt Downes added that “people in the estate are absolutely terrified of him”, and he has been “in a lot of trouble”, including assaults on gardai, breaking into houses and drinking.

Solicitor Will Leahy, acting on behalf of the council, said that further anti-social behaviour is “quite likely if Dermot Ryan is permitted to remain in the estate”

*A full version of this story appeared in the Limerick Leader weekend edition