Dad hauled son to PSNI over Facebook drugs snap posted before Odyssey Hardwell gig
Published 10/02/2014 | 08:00
The father of a teenager who posted pictures of drink and suspected drugs has told how he handed his son to police, then invited them to search his home.
The 18-year-old was yesterday arrested for alleged possession of class A drugs with intent to supply.
Hours before the Odyssey event, young west Belfast man Rian McCool posted a picture of bottles of cider and vodka, as well as packets of white powder and blue pills.
The Facebook picture was shared across the social network hundreds of times with other users messaging the youth, criticising the stunt.
When his father Joe was told of the picture he brought his son to police, and told officers they were free to search his home for illicit substances.
"On hearing this news tonight and verifying the picture as being taken in my home I immediately asked for assistance from my cousin's husband who initially informed me of what was being circulated regarding my son," he said.
"I took it upon myself to track down Rian's whereabouts and took him to police for questioning regarding the picture he uploaded."
They attended Grosvenor Road police station, accompanied by local community worker Jim Donnelly.
Mr Donnelly said Rian had been foolish.
"I'm sure there were others who could have posted similar pictures but didn't," he said.
"It was a very difficult decision."
Mr Donnelly added: "The drugs problem in this area is no different to any other area.
"This is not a new problem. Drugs have been a problem since before I was born and continues to be.
"It's not just young people, but last night has brought a whole new focus on it.
"It's an issue that has to be dealt with."
Belfast Sinn Fein councillor Niall O Donnghaile praised the father's actions.
And a PSNI spokeswoman said: "Police can confirm that an 18-year-old male was arrested at Grosvenor Road police station in the early hours of this morning, Friday, February 7 on suspicion of being in possession of class A controlled drugs with intent to supply."
He has been released on police bail pending further inquiries.
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