Sligo solicitor in ‘fatality’ warning over suspects being released in Ballymote

A solicitor in Sligo has criticised gardaí for arresting people in Sligo and releasing them in Ballymote, a 20-minute drive away.

Anyone arrested in Sligo, including for routine drug searches, is brought to Ballymote Garda Station as Sligo Garda Station is reportedly no longer fit for detaining prisoners.

Solicitor Gerard McGovern of McGovern Walsh & Co. told The Sligo Champion that this has led to suspects from Sligo being released in Ballymote in the early morning with no means of travelling home.

Mr McGovern has said this is particularly dangerous where a drunk person is arrested under the Public Order Act and later released.

Mr McGovern, who says he has opened a correspondence with Sligo Superintendent Mary Murray about the issue, said: “People are being released on to the streets of Ballymote in the early hours of the morning and this policy will lead to a fatality on a dark night.

“I cannot understand why a person in these circumstances could not have been searched at Sligo Garda Station but this is now the policy of the gardaí where everyone is brought to Ballymote.”

He has called for the policy to be re-examined.