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C DISTRICT – Deliberate forest fires Downpatrick

September 20, 2012, 2:52 pm

Downpatrick PSNI Neighbourhood officers have called to the homes of children suspected to have been involved in a series of forest fires that were set to lure the Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue Service into stoning incidents.

A spokesperson for police in Down area said:

“The fire service has reported a number of incidents to us when they have responded to reports of a fire at the forest on Flying Horse Road, only to be greeted by stone throwing youths who have erected booby traps for them to negotiate. The dangers are obvious.

By lighting the fires these children are putting their own lives in danger, as well as the lives of the fire officers. Throwing stones and setting makeshift booby traps by hanging wires from trees to impede fire service progress adds more danger to what is a mindless act of vandalism.

We have been speaking to the parents of children suspected to have any involvement in these incidents and will have further contact with them to ensure they are aware of just how dangerous this is.

Police will continue to identify anyone who is responsible for lighting fires in the forest and anyone who is involved in stone throwing incidents. We would also remind parents of their responsibility to ensure they know where their children are and what they are doing.”

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