Meath Cllr 'shocked' at apparent petrol bomb attack on local offices

Meath Cllr 'shocked' at apparent petrol bomb attack on local offices
Cllr Sharon Keogan's office in Duleek after the apparent petrol bomb attack. Pictures: Seamus Farrelly

A Meath county councillor says she is "shocked" at an apparent petrol bomb attack at her offices in Duleek, which was discovered this morning.

Independent Cllr Sharon Keogan was shaken this morning but is thankful that the fire failed to fully ignite, preventing any harm to residents living in the upstairs of the premises.

Cllr Keogan who became the first female in Ireland to be elected onto two municipal areas when she took seats in both Ashbourne and Laytown/Bettystown in last May's local elections is a candidate for the forthcoming General Election.

"I was notified after 8am that a window was broken at my offices and on investigation, it seems that a brick was thrown into the window, followed by papers and some kind of accelerant. Gardaí are currently carrying out forensic tests here," she said.

"There has been a lot of smoke damage caused but I'm so grateful that people living upstairs were uninjured by this. I'm just so shocked by it all"

The Councillor who sits on the Bettystown/Laytown Municipal council believes that the attack is in some way linked to her series of talks about drugs and condemnation of drug dealing in the community.

Meath Cllr 'shocked' at apparent petrol bomb attack on local offices

She is one of the organisers of a talk in Stamullen tomorrow night, featuring drug and addiction counsellors and mental health advocates.

"I think someone is trying to intimidate me and make me stop speaking out about drug dealing in the Duleek area but I can't let them stop me. I'm not going to be deterred because these talks are helping people.

In 2018, there were five suicides in the area and after the regular talks which began last year, there has been no sudden deaths in 2019. That speaks for itself.

"These talks are helping so many people with drug and mental health issues and they are allowing the community to take back control of their towns and villages.

"This is an attack, not just on me, but on the whole community and we have to come together to fight this."

Gardaí have confirmed that they are investigating an incident of criminal damage at Duleek on January 14th and that investigations are ongoing.

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