Motorcyclist sought after garda injured in checkpoint hit-and-run

Injured officer was on duty at a static checkpoint during Elton John concert in Cork’s Páirc Uí Chaoimh

14/03/2022 - NEWS - The Road Safety Authority (RSA) and An Garda Síochána have launched their St. Patrick’s Weekend Bank Holiday road safety appeal.  GV from the Garda checkpoint on the Chapelizod Road.  Photograph Nick Bradshaw for The Irish Times

Gardaí have begun harvesting CCTV footage in a bid to identify a hit-and-run motorcyclist who failed to stop after knocking down a garda policing the Elton John concert in Cork on Friday evening.

The injured officer was one of a group of four officers at a static checkpoint at the junction of Victoria Road and Monahan Road on duty for the concert in nearby Páirc Uí Chaoimh when he was hit by the motorcyclist just before 7pm.

It’s understood the motorcyclist had earlier driven through a Garda checkpoint and gone down Monahan Road towards Páirc Uí Chaoimh, prompting officers on the checkpoint to notify gardaí on mobile patrol to pursue the motorcyclist.

Gardaí on patrol in a Garda van approached the motorcyclist and indicated to him that he should pull in and stop, and he initially seemed to be about to do so, but as officers approached he revved his bike and took off  at speed back up Monahan Road.

The injured officer, a member of the Roads Policing Unit in his late 30s, heard and saw the motorcyclist coming at him at speed and tried to jump out of his way, but the motorcyclist drove on, hitting the officer at speed and catapulting him into the air.

The injured officer landed on his shoulder and was taken by ambulance to Cork University Hospital where he was treated for concussion and soft tissue injuries to his neck and shoulder. He remained in hospital overnight for monitoring before being discharged on Saturday afternoon.

After the impact, the motorcyclist continued at speed up Albert Road. It was unclear whether he turned right on the N27 to cross over the River Lee to head towards the city’s northside, or turned left and went out the N27 to the southside or to head east or west.

Gardaí have begun gathering CCTV footage from commercial and domestic premises on Victoria Road and Monahan Road, as well as around the Kennedy Quay and Albert Road area, to try to identify the type of motorbike involved in the hit-and-run in a bid to track down the driver.

Gardaí are also checking CCTV footage from around the Old Station Road and Anglesea Street junction to see if the man may have continued across Anglesea Street to head up George’s Quay and back into the city centre, or turned left at Anglesea Street to head towards Douglas.

Gardaí are appealing for any witnesses to come forward. They are particularly anxious to speak to any road users who may have camera footage (including dash-cam) and were travelling in the area of the Victoria Road/Monahan Road Junction between 6:50pm and 7:05pm.

Anyone with information that can assist gardaí is asked to contact Anglesea Street Garda station on 021 452 2000, the Garda Confidential Line on 1800 666 111, or any Garda station.

A Garda spokesman said that apart from the hit-and-run the Elton John concert passed off without incident, with more than 40,000 fans enjoying the veteran star’s performance as part of his acclaimed Farewell Yellow Brick Road tour.

Barry Roche

Barry Roche

Barry Roche is Southern Correspondent of The Irish Times