Garda Press Office disputes Sunday Independent report

The Garda Press Office has issued a statement pointing out "inaccuracies" in a recent report in the Sunday Independent by journalist Jim Cusack. Under the headline, "Helpless gardai waited hours for armed units", Jim Cusack reported that "two unarmed gardaí who were threatened with a pistol in west Dublin had to wait for almost two hours before armed support arrived, so they could make arrests."

He cited an anonymous Garda as saying, "We tried all over the city but there was not one armed garda on duty in Dublin." However, garda Kevin Donohoe of the Garda Press Office issued a statement on Tuesday 2 May claiming that the incident described above was "concluded within 42 minutes of being first encountered." He said, "The incident commenced at 6.50:39 hours. when a uniformed (unarmed) patrol observed some suspicious activity. Four other local uniformed units were alerted to the incident and advised to assist. All units were at the location by 6.57 hours.

"At 6.54 hours, as the incident unfolded and it was confirmed to be an armed incident, details were circulated to armed response units. During the incident, the suspects became mobile and at 6.59 hours the suspects were tracked to a specific location. An armed unit was dispatched arriving there at 7.10 hours, along with air support (helicopter).

"At 7.32 hours the incident was 'cleared' as a live incident, with two persons arrested and firearms recovered."

When contacted by Village, Jim Cusack said: "I'm delighted to see that Vincent Browne and Village magazine and you believe everything that the Garda Press Office says." John Byrne