From Galway Bay FM newsroom- It’s been a good week for Galway schools with national awards for two secondary schools and a primary school in Green Schools Programmes
Two students from two Galway schools have been honoured at the #AndSheCycles
Ella Ward from Coláiste An Eachréidh in Athenry and Ciara Kelly from Dominican College Taylor’s Hill won two of three Outstanding Achievement Awards
The Programme addresses the teenage cycling gender gap by supporting female students to empower their peers to cycle to school.
The awards were presented at a ceremony in Dublin and acknowledged Ella and Ciara for their work promoting cycling and have been appointed ambassadors
Concern over public access to county beaches and waterways
From Galway Bay FM newsroom- Galway County Council has heard concerns over public access to a number of beaches and waterways.
Questions were also raised about the amount of money being made available for repairs and maintenance work on piers.
An absence of clarity about public access to the seashore is a thorny subject for years.
So stated Councillor Tomás Ó Curraoin from Bearna at last evening’s County Council meeting.
From the other side of the County, Councillor Andrew Reddington said the conditions of some slipways amount to death traps.
Galway with 244 piers was coming out badly as regards funding stated Councillor Dáithí Ó Cualáin.
Wicklow with a 24-kilometre coastline was getting €570,000 for piers – in excess of €200,000 more than Galway.
And in a more marked comparison, he stated that Donegal County Council had millions for piers. He called for an audit of piers.
Councillor Gerry King called for a priority list of piers to be drawn up for maintenance and development, and councillor Eileen Mannion proposed that at least two beach areas should have facilities for people with disabilities.
Derek Pender, Head of Infrastructure Services, told the meeting that an audit of piers would be a worthwhile exercise but that it all depended on the money in the end.
Sentencing for rape of former Loughrea resident adjourned for a week
From Galway Bay FM newsroom- A woman with a mild intellectual disability who was raped three times by a stranger after a night out in a west of Ireland town has told a court that something inside her was broken and could never be fixed.
38 year old Costel Pirvu, formerly of Loughrea, was found guilty of three counts of rape and one of false imprisonment after a nine-day trial at the Central Criminal Court last year.
At a hearing this week, the court heard that he continues to maintain his innocence.
On February 4, 2018, the woman, aged 19 at the time, had been out socialising with some friends who walked her half way home.
She told gardaí she saw a man she didn’t know looking at her and she ran, but he grabbed her and forced her against a black jeep and then to the ground, and raped her even though she struggled to escape, getting scrapes and bruises
The woman said Pirvu refused to let her go home, threatened her and forced her to go back to his apartment. She said she felt if she didn’t do what he wanted, he would hurt her.
CCTV footage showed Pirvu and the victim walking back towards his apartment, where she told gardaí he raped her a further two times and finally let her go the next morning when a friend of his walked in.
The woman said she then ran home crying and upset and told her mother, who brought her to the garda station to make a complaint and then to the Sexual Assault and Treatment Unit in Galway.
Pirvu was arrested that evening, his apartment was searched and a DNA sample taken.
He admitted meeting the woman but said she had voluntarily gone back to his house where they had had consensual sex.
The court heard that the victim doesn’t feel safe anymore and is all the time watching for who’s behind her. She can’t eat or sleep properly and suffers PTSD, nightmares, flashbacks and panic attacks.
The court heard that Pirvu has three previous convictions in Romania and Germany, including for robbery, attempted rape and assault.
Ms Justice Deirdre Murphy said she had been told Pirvu got a beating while in prison but didn’t know if this was true or not, as she had not been furnished with the prison report she had requested.
She adjourned the case for a week so that she can be told when the prison report will be available and she apologised to the victim for the delay in sentencing.
Lack of Garda resources in Connemara set to be debated at GRA conference
From Galway Bay FM newsroom- The lack of Garda resources in rural areas and in Gaeltacht areas such as Connemara is set to be discussed by The Garda Representative Association today.
The union is holding its annual conference in Westport today where changes to rosters and pay will also be hot topics.
Dermot O’Brien, the GRA Representative for the Galway Division says the Chief Superintendent of the Galway Garda Division is constantly looking for resources.
He said the Gaeltacht strands initiative with people with a certain level of Irish, has not delivered for areas like Clifden and Carraroe.
Dermot O’Brien told Keith Finnegan on Galway Talks, Gaeltacht areas in Galway are not receiving the policing requirements they deserve.