Cork murder sees calls for measures to protect children

The horrific murder of 11-year-old Cork boy Robert Holohan – my deepest condolences to his, family, friends and loved ones – has invariably led to discussions to how we can best protect children in society.The mayor of Midleton Ted Murphy calls for the return of the death penalty for child killers while district court judge Michael Patwell believes electronic tagging should be used for convicted sex offenders as well as petty criminals although he did make his comments without knowing that the Gardai have said, in the meantime, that there was no sexual assault involved.

The principle of Midleton CBS boys’ secondary school, Denis Ring, takes the view that schools should be involved in the security of children.

I believe RS Sheridan once wrote that only children and tramps are truly free but Ailin Quinlan says that the killing of Robert, only the fourth child murder in the history of the Irish state, signals the end of child freedom as we know it.