O'Connell Street had four times the crime levels of Grafton Street
Dublin's main thoroughfare is the most dangerous street in Ireland, according to a new study.
Crime in O'Connell Street has risen by more than 160% over a five year period.
The National Crime Council commissioned report found a similar increase in the number of public order offences involving juveniles.
The study examined levels of public order throughout the Republic of Ireland.
The report, launched by Irish Justice Minister Michael McDowell on Friday, looks at various aspects of public order offences over the past number of years.
Being drunk in public and threatening or abusive behaviour accounted for 80% of offences, said the authors.
There was also an increase of about 160% in the number of public order offences involving juveniles during the study period of 1996-2001, said the report.
The two headings under which people are prosecuted under this act are
intoxication in a public place and threatening behaviour
National Crime Council
About two-thirds of all the criminal cases resulted in conviction.
O'Connell Street - one of Dublin's most historic areas - recorded four times the crime levels of Grafton Street, at the heart of the city's shopping and tourist area.
National Crime Council chairman Padraig White said he carried out the
report because of the growing number of offences and increasing public concern.
While a significant number of offences did not cause direct harm, they were a
nuisance to the general public, he said.
"The two headings under which people are prosecuted under this act are
intoxication in a public place and threatening behaviour," he said.
Fear of random attacks was highlighted in the report
"They don't necessarily end up in serious harm to people but they cause
aggravation because they cause fear, they interfere with people's ability to go
and enjoy themselves."
"Even though the vast majority of these offences don't end up in damage to an
individual or serious assault it is the fear factor," he said.
Mr White said police officers themselves feared attack.
Fear of random attacks was highlighted in the report, which found 40% of offences committed in city centres were in or outside pubs.