RTE host Miriam O'Callaghan (right) pictured with David Clarke and David O'Brien at the launch of Downs Syndrome Ireland's annual motorcycle fundraising campaign in Dublin on Tuesday.

Called Cops About Fries
A 21-year-old woman described as "bold as brass" by Judge Kevin Kilrane rang the Garda (police) hotline 999 to complain about the quality of her french fries, Sligo District Court heard last week.

Before the court was Melissa Gaffey of Cranmore, who was fined €500 for disorderly conduct at Castle Street in Sligo on October 9.  A summons for having been drunk on the occasion was "taken into consideration."

Garda Alan Murray told the court that at about 1:40 a.m. he was stopped by Gaffey outside Bests Chipper in Castle Street.  She put her head in the window and said she had some issues with her food.

The Garda station had received a number of 999 calls complaining about food. She was extremely drunk, told him to "f** off," and was very aggressive. She was asked to leave and failed to do so.

She was arrested and had to be restrained. She lay on the floor and tried to strike out at Murray. In the Garda station she threw a chair and the custody record on the floor. She lifted up her clothes and exposed herself.

Gaffey said she had sat down to eat and she got pulled by the shoulder and dragged out the door of the chip shop. A Garda told her he was arresting her.

She said she made no telephone calls. She wasn't drunk and had only three or four drinks and they were alcopops. It was "not true" that she became abusive in the Garda station, she said.

Kilrane said Gaffey was either out of her mind with drink or drugs or both. Her behavior was a disgrace and if she had any decency, she could have come into the court with shame. Instead, she came in and said it "never happened."

"Did you ever hear such a ridiculous story that the Gardai came in and pulled her out of a chipper for no reason and brought her up to the station," said Kilrane, adding that she was very lucky she was not going to prison.
- Sligo Champion

Beehives Stolen

Security has been tightened on a Carlow farm following a theft involving three beehives. Gardai are currently investigating the bizarre theft of the bee colonies from agriculture and food development authority Teagasc's Oak Park research farm, but as of yet there have been no arrests.

It is evident that the thieves must have had experience in dealing with bees in order to have been able to pull off such a daring raid without getting stung.

The hives were stolen in two separate incidents in recent weeks and were carried from a field at Teagasc headquarters, about 150 yards to the roadside and presumably into a waiting vehicle.

A certain amount of knowledge of hives is required in order to shut them off to prevent the bees escaping during transit, and the raiders also would have had to have worn protective clothing according to a Teagasc spokesperson.

Gardai are appealing to the bee community at large to keep their eyes peeled for any suspicious activity, but they have admitted that it is difficult to trace the bees as they have no particular distinguishing marks.

A spokesman from Teagasc said, “The beehives would be worth just a couple of hundred euro each.

They have a value in making honey, but they're certainly no pot of gold. They're of huge importance for our research however. Any further thefts could really jeopardize that.”

The bees were being studied to find out what kind of threat was being posed to them by various diseases and pests.
- Carlow People

Sickening Slaughter
A Templemore farmer whose beautiful snow white lambs were bludgeoned to death by intrudersusing an iron bar said that he would have had no hesitation in shooting the perpetrators had he arrived on the scene at the time of the attack.

John Percy admitted that he was fortunate he didn’t come on the attack on Thursday, March 1 as two of his young lambs were tied up and beaten to death by the intruders.

His wife Annie discovered the bloodied scene early on Friday morning when she found a number of shed doors open and the animals in a distressed state.

“It was the most awful experience. Our poor defenseless animals battered to death with an iron bar. It was very upsetting for us both,” said Percy.

“We just don’t understand what kind of thugs could have done this to the poor creatures. I have been taking the gun with me to the sheds every night since.”

Percy added that there have only been three occasions since St. Stephen’s night that he or his wife have not been in the sheds with lambing.

One of the lambs killed had been held down and its legs tied with wire from an electric fence, before being dragged around the outhouse and then beaten to death. A second lamb was clobbered over the head with a heavy object, thought to be an iron bar, while an in-calf heifer was discovered to have lost the calf on Sunday evening, more than likely as a result of the distress caused.
- Tipperary Star

Mayor Is an *******
Bundoran Town Council proceedings stooped to a new low last week when Mayor Michael McMahon was branded “an a**hole” by council colleague Florence Doherty.

The outburst occurred while members were considering the draft fraud and corruption policies for Donegal local authorities.

There was a general consensus that the draft policies should be approved without discussion, but

Doherty felt the issue merited further discussion.

“I think this is very important. There seems to be very little here outlining the procedure for follow up of issues raised at meetings. I think this document should also make it clear that members should make clear their hidden agendas, their cronies and their vested interests, to protect whistle blowers,” she said.

McMahon said there was no need for discussion, as there had been a proposal to adopt the policies and this had been seconded.

He added, “Thank God this country doesn’t need whistle blowers.”

Doherty retorted, “Of course it does, you a**hole.”

McMahon replied, “Isn’t that lovely?”

Other councilors suggested that he formally discipline Doherty, but he declined and refused to comment any further.

Speaking on local radio, Doherty refused to withdraw the insult, and repeated the word four times live on air again.

Doherty, however, did offer an apology to the people of Bundoran who elected the mayor.
- Donegal Democrat

Scared of Thugs

A businesswoman has said she no longer feels safe staying open late at night in Longford town after vandals attempted to smash through her front door.

Susan O’Connor made the comments just a few hours following an attempted raid at her dental repair clinic along the town’s Dublin Street recently.

The Dundalk entrepreneur’s anxiety over what had just unfolded was made all the more worse by the fact she had only recently moved premises.

“I would only usually open early when I would have clients who were on their way to work. This morning (Wednesday) I said I would wait until 9:15 p.m. and I was that afraid I walked downstairs with a hammer in my hand,” she said.

Damage was caused to the Ms O’Connor’s front door as thieves tried to gain access to her new-look establishment.

Visibly distressed, she claimed the incident was likely to cost up to €2,000 to rectify.

“My father (Aiden) opened this place 23 years ago across the road and nothing ever happened,” she claimed as customers continued to come in and out of her busy clinic. “This year, I decided I needed something more modernized. I got a new sign and a new door but I’m three weeks here, that’s all.”

The upshot of it all has left the plain-speaking dentistry owner having to re-assess her own safety needs. “I would work here up until 10 or 11 p.m., but now I am saying to myself, is it safe?” she asked.
-Longford Leader