DCSIMG

Ballymena fifth on weekend violence table

Domestic violence

Domestic violence

There have been 312 incidents of late-night weekend violence in Ballymena in the past year.

This is the fifth highest amount of any town or city in Northern Ireland.

The figures covered Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays from October last year to September this year. It is understood that a sizeable percentage of the statistics refer to domestic incidents.

They were obtained by The Irish News through a freedom of information request, which revealed that there were around 8.300 attacks across Northern Ireland.

Belfast topped the table with a total of 2.316 incidents, followed by Londonderry with 810, Craigavon 420 and Newry 381.

SDLP Councillor Declan O’Loan told the Times that he was concerned by the findings, he said: “This is a very undesirable result and one that the PSNI and the Policing an Community Safety Partnership should take very seriously.

“To be so far up the league table for weekend violent crime, especially when we have a relatively small night time economy, is very worrying.

“I want to know more about these incidents - what exactly is the nature of them and where are they happening.

“We should not leap to the conclusion that they are all happening on town centre streets.

“I will ask those questions at the next meeting of the PCSP and ask for a PSNI response to these very unwelcome results.”

Deputy Mayor of Ballymena Councillor James McClean said: “Ballymena Borough Council works closely with the Police and Community Safety Partnership to help make our community a safe place to live and work These figures from the PSNI demonstrate that a small minority of people are engaging in anti-social behaviour at the end of a night out.

“Council will continue to work in partnership with the PSCP and the PSNI to ensure this unacceptable behaviour is curtailed and that those responsible are caught. Our priority is to find out more about the nature of these specific incidents from the PSNI, then consider the ways in which we can address them.

“Ballymena has a great range of weekend entertainment venues, from cinema and theatre to restaurants and award-winning pubs, and people have the right to enjoy them without the threat or fear of violence.”

 

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