Garda ombudsman investigating man's death
THE GARDA Síochána Ombudsman Commission is investigating the death of a man who fell unresponsive in the back of a Garda car and later died. The incident occurred in Castlebar, Co Mayo, early yesterday.
The dead man has been named as Pauraic O’Donnell (39) from Achill Sound. Mr O’Donnell was a member of a large and well-respected family on the island and had one child, a five-year-old girl.
Gardaí were called to investigate a disturbance at Cox’s Bar in Castlebar at 1am yesterday.
Mr O’Donnell was arrested outside the pub and restaurant and was put in a Garda car after he had apparently been ejected from the premises by staff.
He was then driven the short distance to Castlebar Garda station. However, when gardaí tried to take him from the vehicle into the station he was unresponsive. Efforts to wake him were unsuccessful and an ambulance was called. Gardaí performed CPR on Mr O’Donnell in the car until the ambulance arrived to take him to Mayo General Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
A postmortem yesterday afternoon was inconclusive. Results of toxicology tests will be available in the coming weeks.
The Garda informed the ombudsman commission of the death, as it is obliged to in any case where death or injury to a person occurs while in Garda custody or during any other form of contact with a member of the force.
The area outside the Garda station where the patrol car had parked was declared a forensic examination zone, pending the arrival of an investigating team from the ombudsman’s office in Dublin. The office has appealed for anyone who was in Cox’s at the time or who may have seen Mr O’Donnell in the area to contact them. They are keen to try to establish his movements in his last hours and also to speak to anyone who may have seen him in Cox’s up to and including his ejection.
The Garda ombudsman’s office can be telephoned on 1890-600800.