Boxing world pays tribute to 'ferocious fighter' and 'gentleman' Kevin Sheehy

A teenager and an older man, who are being questioned by gardaí on suspicion of murdering a Limerick boxer in a hit and run yesterday, have been transferred to garda stations in Limerick following their arrests in the Midlands last night.

Boxing world pays tribute to 'ferocious fighter' and 'gentleman' Kevin Sheehy

A teenager and an older man, who are being questioned by gardaí on suspicion of murdering a Limerick boxer in a hit and run yesterday, have been transferred to garda stations in Limerick following their arrests in the Midlands last night.

The two male suspects are being questioned by detectives about the alleged murder of Kevin Sheehy, 20, who was knocked down by a black Mitsubishi Shogun SUV in the early hours of Monday.

Gardaí confirmed a second male was injured during the fatal hit and run.

It’s believed the man, in his 20s, was in the company of Mr Sheehy at the time the SUV struck him.

The shocked young man was taken to hospital but was not seriously injured, gardaí said.

“Gardaí can confirm that a man (early 20s) was also injured at the scene of Hyde Road, on Monday morning 4.40a.m. He received minor injuries and attended University Hospital Limerick and has since been discharged,” added a garda spokesman.

Mr Sheehy, of the St Francis Boxing Club in Limerick, had boxed for Ireland, and was a five-time Irish champion.

He was crowned heavyweight champion in the Hull Box Cup Championships last week.

In a post on its Facebook page, St Francis Boxing Club stated how yesterday was “one of the toughest days ever in the history of our club”.

The club opened up its doors to members overnight to “chat about this tragedy or just be around others that are feeling the same loss”.

“There is nothing to gain bottling up these feelings and emotions,” the club added.

Monkstown Boxing Club, Dublin, shared a tweet paying tribute to Sheehy: “Heartbreaking news, a very talented boxer but most importantly a lovely young man, our thoughts and prayers are with the Sheehy family, all coaches and members of the St Francis boxing club at this difficult time. R.I.P Kevin.”

Irish-Boxing.com tweeted its sympathies to Sheehy’s family and friends, describing the 20-year old Olympic hopeful as “a ferocious fighter inside the ring and a gentleman outside it...Irish boxing has lost a star in Kevin”.

Smithfield Boxing Club stated it was “deeply shocked & saddened by the loss of a talented boxer, and wonderful young man”.

Gardaí believe a relative of a senior gangland figure was in the SUV when it knocked Mr Sheehy down. It is understood the youth was born in the UK but has close family links in Limerick city and regularly visits there.

The SUV, which bore UK registration plates, was later recovered on the north of Limerick city near the Pairc na nGael GAA sports ground.

Gardaí have been liaising with police in the UK in trying to trace the driver.

It is believed more than one person was in the vehicle when it knocked down Mr Sheehy.

Garda sources say that, as part of several lines of inquiry, they are investigating if Mr Sheehy, from John Carew Park, Limerick, was specifically targeted. Gardaí would not comment officially on the nature of the circumstances they believe occurred prior to Mr Sheehy’s death.

Picture: Sportsfile
Picture: Sportsfile

Both suspects were initially brought by gardaí to a Midlands garda station for questioning.

In a statement this morning, a garda spokesman said: “The two arrested men are now detained at Roxboro Road Garda Station and Henry Street Garda station under Section 4, Criminal Justice Act, 1984.”

“Investigations ongoing,” they added.

A Garda source confirmed a post mortem is underway on Mr Sheehy’s body this afternoon.

The autopsy which is being conducted by Locum Assistant State Pathologist, Dr Allen Cala, will help determine how the Garda investigation proceeds, sources said.

Gardaí will have to seek directions from the office of the Director of Public Prosecutions by around 8pm tonight on whether they can bring charges against the two males.

Anyone with information about Mr Sheehy's death is asked to contact Roxboro Road garda station on 061-214340 or the Garda Confidential Line on 1800-666-111.

More in this section

Lunchtime News Wrap

A lunchtime summary of content highlights on the Irish Examiner website. Delivered at 1pm each day.

Sign up