Families of two missing women are appealing for more resources for the Serious Crime Review Team in the hopes it will help them find their loved ones.
Relatives of Jo Jo Dollard, missing for 21 years, and Deirdre Jacob, who vanished from outside her home 18 years ago, are calling for additional Garda resources to assist in finding their loved ones. They are being supported in their calls for resources by Fianna Fáil TD John McGuinness.
Ahead of International Missing Persons Day next week, Deirdre’s father Michael Jacob is concerned the Special Crime Review Team (SCRT), set up in 2007 to find people missing for a long period of time, is lacking vital resources.
At the National Missing Persons Day in Farmleigh on Wednesday, Mr Jacob intends to raise the lack of resources with Minister for Justice Frances Fitzgerald and Garda Commissioner Nóirín O’Sullivan.
According to Mr Jacob, there are only two senior gardaí managing the SCRT, with a team assisting them, that could be asked to work elsewhere on other business at any time.
“I think there is a need for a dedicated group, without interruption. Over the years, we have had a very good working relationship with the gardaí and continue to do so. I will always respect their effort but we know that they are working with meagre resources,” said Mr Jacob.
On July 28, 1998, Ms Jacob left her home at about noon and walked into Newbridge to visit her grandmother.
She was last seen at approximately 3.30pm at the gateway to her house in Roseberry, Newbridge. She never made it to the doorway of her house and there have been no sightings of her since.
Mr Jacob is at a loss to understand what happened to his daughter.
“There were no complications in her life.
“Everything was running smoothly, her studies were going according to plan. It is on our mind all the time, sometimes it hits in a severe way. It is not just birthdays or at Christmas, it is everyday that she is missing. Time does not heal at all. We are reminded all the time.”
The Serious Crime Review completed Ms Jacob’s case and handed it to Kildare Garda Division earlier this year. At the time, Kildare-based Garda Supt Martin Walker said: “Nothing new is jumping out at us.”
Newbridge Lions Club is now behind a new poster appeal for information.
Meanwhile, sister of Jo Jo Dullard, Kathleen Bergin, is calling for the Serious Crime Review Team to look at her sister’s case.
Jo Jo was 21 years old at the time of her disappearance. She made a call from a phonebox in Moone, Co Kildare, on November 9, 1995.
A short time later a woman answering Jo Jo’s description was seen leaning on the back door of a dark coloured Toyota Carina-type car. There were further sightings of a woman similar to Jo Jo in Castledermot, Co Kildare at around midnight.
The driver or occupants of this car have never been traced. When she failed to reach her destination, her family reported her missing.
Ms Bergin and Mr McGuinness plan to meet members of the Serious Crime Team to try and organise a new examination of the case. Ms Bergin said: “It is not right; there need to be more resources. Not a day goes by that we do not think of Jo Jo. We want to have her back. Finding Jo Jo is very important to us.” The family “dread this time of year”, she said.
“We celebrate Christmas for our own grandchildren but there is an emptiness without Jo Jo. There were four good sightings of her from Moone to Castledermot but nobody has come forward to confirm this.
“How long do we have to go on pleading for information? Somebody knows something.”
© Irish Examiner Ltd. All rights reserved