'It is perfectly clear evil does exist'
The priest concelebrating the funeral Mass of murdered Det Garda Adrian Donohoe has urged fresh thinking on policing resources so that people in rural communities do not sleep in their beds in fear, and evil does not triumph over virtue.
Fr Michael Cusack made an appeal to anyone shielding the killers or withholding information about them. He said they had it in their power to give closure to Det Garda Donohoe’s widow, Caroline, son Niall (6) and daughter Amy (7).
“If you have a semblance of goodness in you, for God’s sake turn these people in. If not, you are allowing Satan ruin the lives of more people.”
Fr Cusack told mourners in St Joseph’s Redemptorist Church in Dundalk that Det Garda Donohoe was a loving family man who gave himself to his wife and two young children, his job, the GAA and the community he lived in.
He said that as a Redemptorist priest he had always found himself unable to preach about fire and brimstone.
“People say to me is there such a thing at all as fire and brimstone? Is there a battle between good and evil? But it is perfectly clear evil does exist [in] the callous mowing down of an innocent human being.”
He added that evil could “take hold of any heart, creeping in, slow acceptance, gentle movement until there is contamination all around”.
That evil had permeated all walks of life including politics, business, banking, the church and the media and was present in the murder of Det Garda Donohoe near his home in Lordship, Bellurgan, Co Louth, last Friday night.
Such evil was “clearly personified, almost satanic” in the dealing of drugs. Yet when people were jailed they were still able to continue running their drug businesses from behind bars.
“It’s like Satan laughing at us,” he told mourners.
Fr Cusack said that when he went back to his native community in Galway the one garda who had been based there for years had gone. Since his departure, two men in their 80s had had their “heads bashed in” at their homes, one of them left without hearing or a sense of smell as a result.
When he looked at the people in the area he could see fear in the eyes of the elderly who went to bed fearful at night.
He added those who shielded the gang members who killed Det Garda Donohoe prolonged his family’s pain and denied them closure.