Gardaí had 'no alternative' to chasing naked man
Gardaí had no alternative but to chase a man who was found running naked around a north Dublin suburb and who died shortly afterwards, an inquest heard yesterday.
William Kavanagh (58) from Edenmore Crescent in Raheny, Dublin, died after midnight on June 5th, 2009, shortly after he had been restrained by gardaí who found him running naked in the Bayside area.
He had punched a female garda in the jaw as she tried to calm him down. Mr Kavanagh became unwell after gardaí handcuffed him and placed him in the recovery position. He was not breathing when paramedics arrived at the scene.
He had been involved in a number of other incidents earlier in the night.
Dublin Coroner’s Court previously heard from state pathologist Marie Cassidy. She had said that, based on what she had been told by gardaí, Mr Kavanagh had exhibited symptoms of excited delirium in the hours before his death.
The condition can lead to sudden, bizarre and often violent behaviour. Mr Kavanagh, who had significant cardiac disease, died as a result of a stress-related heart attack, she said.
At the resumed inquest yesterday, Garda Aidan Morgan said he and Garda Judith Notely had responded to the call about the naked man.
Garda Morgan said there was no alternative but to pursue Mr Kavanagh on foot because the area was full of alleyways and laneways. When Garda Notely put her hand on Mr Kavanagh’s arm to try to calm him down, he had turned around and punched her in the jaw, said Garda Morgan.
It wasn’t until reserve Garda Noel Cumiskey arrived that they were able to restrain Mr Kavanagh, bringing him to the ground and handcuffing him. Mr Kavanagh slowly calmed down and stopped shouting abuse.
Reserve Garda Cumiskey, who had recently completed CPR training at the time, said that he checked twice that Mr Kavanagh had a pulse and he observed him breathing.
When the paramedics arrived they requested that Mr Kavanagh’s handcuffs be removed and immediately began CPR.
The inquest continues today.