'Vigilantes' recording assaults have gardaí very concerned 

webnexttech | 'Vigilantes' recording assaults have gardaí very concerned 

Gardaí are very concerned at comments accompanying the videos, or in replies and in reposts, endorsing the violence and encouraging more of it against immigrants or “foreigners”. On Thursday, at the Grand Canal Docks, Dublin, a man suffered significant injuries after being kicked in the head by attackers who accused him of trying to grab a child in a nearby playground. Gardaí had received calls about a male, thought to be the man attacked, acting in a “concerning manner” in the area. When they arrived at Grand Canal Plaza, they found a man lying flat out on the ground after being assaulted. Gardaí thought the man had significant mental health issues, and sources said he could easily have suffered serious brain damage or worse in the assault. The man, described as Eastern European, was charged yesterday with public order offences, including being verbally abusive and refusing to give gardaí his name. Mock-up images of the man lying outstretched have been circulated online by far-right individuals, including election candidates, as a warning Garda sources said they had yet to receive a complaint regarding any alleged incident involving the man and a child, or any report from a witness, prompting them to issue an appeal looking for anyone who “directly observed” the male interacting with the child. In a second incident recorded in Dublin’s north inner city, a video shows a man crossing the road to punch an apparent foreign national who had allegedly flashed at a schoolchild. The attacker pursued his target before the victim fell and the attacker repeatedly punched him. In an assault in Cork City, another man was beaten to the ground and kicked several times in the head by a hooded attacker. An accomplice hurled abuse at the man as he recorded the assault. It was widely circulated online, including by prominent far-right agitators — some of them candidates in the upcoming local and European Parliament elections. The assault victim, according to social media posts, had allegedly sexually assaulted a boy in a toilet in Merchants Quay Shopping Centre last Thursday. Gardaí have confirmed they are investigating “an incident” at Merchants Quay on May 2. They did not provide information regarding a subsequent assault on the same man. In a separate incident, on Thursday, in Newbridge, Kildare, a video was uploaded in which a woman alleged that she and her child had been approached by a “non-national” who told her he wanted to take her daughter. “What’s concerning is ‘vigilante’ types who decide to carry out a violent assault and kick people in the head, which could inflict brain damage or worse — and record it,” a senior Garda source said. “Then you have the usual people, with very large following, who send the video out. What’s really scary is the volume of support for this violence and the incitement for further violence.” Another source said: “There are people, including election candidates, who are promoting this violence.”

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