Two held over death of man outside Dublin pub

Gardaí believe Jason ‘Jay’ Saunders (21) was attacked with a golf club


Two men have been arrested in connection with the death a 21-year-old who suffered severe head injuries after being attacked with a golf club outside a St Patrick’s Day house party in the early hours of this morning.

The victim, named locally as Jason ‘Jay’ Saunders, had arrived at the flat, located above a shop on Fassaugh Avenue in Cabra, with the chief suspect in the assault.

Gardaí are attempting to establish how a row in which Mr Saunders and the other man ended up, spilled out onto the road outside the Cabra House pub where the victim was discovered at about 7.30am.

At about 11.45am a man in a grey and white tracksuit was led away from the scene in the back of a Garda car.

A large area of Fassaugh Avenue surrounding the row of shops over which the apartment is located was sealed off by Garda forensic teams.

Investigators have appealed for a taxi driver who brought a number of party-goers to the address to make contact as he or she may hold crucial information.

Just after 11am a 23-year-old man was arrested in Cabra under Section 4 of the Criminal Justice Act and was being detained at Finglas Garda station.

Shortly after midday, a 25-year-old was arrested in Finglas and was being detained at Blanchardstown Garda station under Section 30 of the Offences Against the State Act, which relates to the withholding of information.

Mr Saunders, whose killing is not thought to be related to organised crime, was taken by ambulance to the Mater Hospital where he was later pronounced dead.

Neighbours were shocked at the death of Mr Saunders, who had lived just a few doors down the road from the scene and who was well known in the area.

Several witnesses said the mother of the deceased had attended the scene shortly after the news broke this morning.

One woman told The Irish Times that her mother had been among the first to attend to Mr Saunders early this morning after visiting a nearby bank machine.

“She was holding his hand a bit; his mum was up there as well,” she said.

“It seems that there was a scuffle or something. I heard that he was drinking upstairs in the apartment over the shop.

“Cabra is a great place but not around here; we have seen some terrible things.”

Witnesses also said that a nurse had been walking past the scene and tried to help Mr Saunders before paramedics arrived and attempted resuscitation for about half an hour.

State pathologist Prof Marie Cassidy is to carry out a post-mortem examination today which will help determine whether the investigation will be upgraded to murder.

Superintendent Dave Taylor of the Garda Press Office appealed to the public for assistance.

“We would like to ask anybody who may have seen any unusual or suspicious activity between the hours of 6am and 8am this morning on Fassaugh Avenue to come forward,” he said.

“We were aware at the time that a social event was taking place at this location and we are also aware that a taxi dropped off a number of people.

“This morning a number of people rendered assistance to the deceased at the location; we would ask those people could they come forward and talk to us, they may have important information.”

The taxi driver in particular was asked to come forward.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the incident room at Cabra station on (01) 6667400 or any other station.