Wednesday 22 February 2017

Officers on ground in despair as cuts kill off rural safety

Paul Williams

Published 29/08/2015 | 02:30

Gardaí at the scene in Doon where John O’Donoghue collapsed and died after being confronted by intruders at his home
Gardaí at the scene in Doon where John O’Donoghue collapsed and died after being confronted by intruders at his home

The tragic death of John O'Donoghue is a reminder of why elderly people living in rural Ireland feel fearful, vulnerable and isolated. No one is ever likely to be charged with causing his death because he had a bad heart and had already undergone bypass surgery.

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Nevertheless, no one can deny that his death was connected to the sudden and traumatic realisation that intruders had invaded the sanctity of his home.

Despite the quick and courageous response of a local garda and one of John's neighbours, which led to the apprehension of the culprits, this incident has shattered the peace of mind of the other elderly people living in this otherwise tranquil area.

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