Garda gunned down in murder suicide

A garda and married father of three young children became the second officer to be gunned down in Co Louth in less than three years after he answered a 999 call to a domestic incident in a house last night.

A woman was also shot and seriously injured during the incident before the gunman turned his weapon on himself.

At approximately 6pm, gardaí from Omeath Garda Station got an emergency call to a domestic incident at the Mullach Alainn estate in Omeath.

Garda gunned down in murder suicide

Garda Tony Golden, 36, went into the house where, it is believed, he was confronted by 24-year-old Adrian Mackin, who was armed with a handgun. Mackin fired a number of shots, hitting both the woman and the officer. The garda was fatally injured, while the woman received serious injuries.

Mackin, who had been before the Special Criminal Court on charges of IRA membership and who was on bail, is understood to have then turned the gun on himself, taking his own life.

The shooting took place just a short distance from Bellurgan where Detective Garda Adrian Donohoe, also a married father of three young children, was gunned down by raiders in an attempted robbery from a Co Louth credit union. Adrian Donohoe had been the first garda to be murdered in 17 years.

Garda gunned down in murder suicide

Garda Commissioner Nóirín O’Sullivan last night issued a statement in which she said she was “deeply saddened to hear of the death of my colleague in a fatal shooting incident this evening while carrying out their duties”.

“At this time, my thoughts and prayers and those of the entire Garda service are with his family, friends and colleagues,” said Commissioner O’Sullivan.

“This incident highlights the unique nature of the job carried out by the men and women of An Garda Síochána, and the dangers they face every day.”

Garda gunned down in murder suicide

The Garda Representative Association said it was shocked and saddened by the awful news that one of their colleagues had been shot and killed and said the thoughts and prayers of the association were with the member’s family, friends and colleagues.

GRA president Dermot O’Brien said: “This dreadful, dreadful news is the deepest fear of every police family. This puts everything we do into perspective.

“At this time of distress, the garda family will be doing everything possible to support the late garda’s relatives and loved ones, friends and colleagues.”

John Jacob, deputy general secretary of the AGSI, described the shooting as “the ultimate sacrifice in the line of duty”.

“We are reminded that our colleague left his home today to do his job,” he said. “There are no words tonight to describe the loss felt among the Garda family. We are grieving for our colleague and extend our deepest sympathies to his wife, three children, family, friends and Garda colleagues in Co Louth.”

Garda gunned down in murder suicide

Justice Minister Frances Fitzgerald said the the fact that a garda had laid down his life while protecting the community “is a cause of great sadness”.

“His death will be mourned by the entire nation, grateful for the service which he gave to it,” said Ms Fitzgerald.

“Today’s tragic events are a stark reminder of the risks which members of An Garda Síochána face day in day out trying to keep our communities safe.

“I know our communities will stand with An Garda Síochána at this most difficult time for them. While no words at this time can be expected to console his wife and children, his family, his colleagues and all who loved him, they know that he gave his life in the best traditions of An Garda Síochána protecting the community he was so proud to serve.”

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