Guardian of the peace assaulted in the line of duty forced to discharge firearm in self defence. “Guard dog” dead and man injured. Now the Garda has received “serious” threats online and has had to be placed under 24/7 armed protection.
A Garda Sergeant who was involved in a confrontation in which a man was shot in the leg is under armed protection after receiving online threats. A number of threats have appeared online, apparently giving details of the officer's rural home as well as comments such as "go get him". Armed Gardaí were deployed to the sergeant's home on Monday night, just hours after the incident took place and a video of it went viral on social media, as the threats were deemed to be "very significant". The Chairman of Longford’s Joint Policing Committee, Cllr Gerry Warnock has branded the “death threats” made against the Garda involved as “disgusting”.
Garda discharges weapon: Dog dead, man injured
On Monday, December 3rd, at about 5 pm in the evening, a plain clothes Garda Sergeant, who was following up on an investigation, when he got caught up in a confrontation, was attacked by an Alsatian dog. The Garda, who had his side-arm drawn when attacked, discharged his firearm killing the dog. The bullet travelled through the dog and ricocheted, injuring a nearby man, who the Garda had previously been struggling with. The man was injured in his lower leg, and his injuries are not believed to be life threatening. He was admitted to Midlands Regional Hospital, Mullingar to be treated for the injuries.
It is understood that the armed Garda Sergeant arrived at the scene after a member of the public called Granard garda station claiming that he was unable to get his van back after it had been repaired by an associate of the man who was injured. The caller had driven to Co Longford from the Newmarket area of Co Cork to retrieve the vehicle, but when he arrived in Longford a confrontation broke out and Gardaí were called. When Gardaí arrived at the scene, it is understood the confrontation became more heated and a woman "pulled a slash hook" on the van's owner.
A video of the alleged incident circulated online showing a struggle between a member of An Garda Siochana and the injured man. It appeared to show the officer's tie being pulled by the dog, although the dog was not visible on the screen, before a gun shot rang out, and the woman recording the incident began screaming hysterically.
Both the Gardai and GSCO are investigating the matter. On Monday, the Gardai released a statement to say they would not be commenting on the incident. The statement said: “As part of an on-going investigation by Gardai from Longford, they attended at an incident in Granard earlier this evening the 3rd of December 2018. During the course of this incident an official Garda firearm was discharged. As this incident has been referred to the Garda Siochana Ombudsman Commission, An Garda Siochana are not in a position to comment further."
It is understood that Assistant Garda Commissioner Orla McPartlin travelled to Granard garda station this week to meet with senior officers there and was briefed in relation to the happenings on Monday night. No arrests have been made with respect to the incident.
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