He expressed concerns over the possibility of violence escalating.
In the wake of an attack on a young man in Dublin earlier this month, a Fianna Fáil TD has said that homophobic gangs are “prowling” the streets of the capital.
Jim O’Callaghan, who is a TD for Dublin Bay South made the comments in relation to a recent incident in the city centre in which Evan Somers was attacked and subjected to homophobic abuse.
Mr Somers, who is a rugby player for the Emerald Warriors, was left with a broken eye socket, two ankle fractures and several other injuries after the attack which took place near Dame Street.
As Dublin Live reports, Mr O’Callaghan expressed his concerns in the Dáil yesterday.
He said: “A dangerous level of unprovoked and gratuitous violence is being perpetrated against people who are socialising in Dublin at night time.
— Dr Panti Bliss-Cabrera (@PantiBliss) April 13, 2022
“We need to understand what is happening. Gangs of youths who believe they are immune to apprehension are prowling Dublin city at night time looking for people to attack.”
The TD went on: “They are misogynistic towards women, they are homophobic towards gay people and they are particularly seeking to target men in their late teens to their 30s who are on their own or just with one other person.”
Mr O’Callaghan then suggested that a larger Garda presence is required in light of these attacks, and then expressed concerns about the possible escalation of violence.
He said: “I fear that we will not get a strong enough response until regrettably a tourist is killed in this city. If it is not checked or challenged, Dublin will get a terrible name as a place of violence.
“It will damage our tourism industry and will also damage us as a place for foreign direct investment. We need tougher and stronger policing and stronger sentencing.”
Feature image: Leah Farrell/RollingNews.ie