Cork hit-and-run suspect released as toddler remains critical

17-year-old was arrested on Tuesday after car hit Zac Higgins (2) and failed to stop

A 17-year-old boy has been released without charge after being arrested in connection with a hit-and-run which left a two-year-old boy with serious injuries.

Detectives arrested the 17-year-old in Mahon in Cork city shortly after 2pm on Tuesday in relation to the hit-and-run at Castlemeadows in Mahon where Zac Higgins was seriously injured.

The teenager was conveyed to the Bridewell Garda Station where he was detained under Section 4 of the Criminal Justice Act which allows gardaí detain suspects for up to 24 hours.

Gardaí released the teenager, who was suspected of driving the car involved in the hit-and-run, without charge at around 1am morning and will now prepare on the matter for the DPP.


Zac was struck by a blue Mazda 6 which failed to stop after he ran on to the road in Castlemeadows when chasing a ball that went out from his garden at around 3.50pm on Monday.

The alarm was raised and paramedics worked to stablise Zac at the scene before he was rushed, with his parents Paul and Aisling, by ambulance to Cork University Hospital.

He was later transferred by ambulance to Temple Street Children’s Hospital in Dublin where his condition was described as “serious but stable” as he remained in an induced coma.

Meanwhile gardaí in Cork were satisfied from their inquiries that the driver of the blue Mazda 6 was aware that they had struck the child but failed to remain at the scene.

Gardaí located a car matching the description of the vehicle involved in the hit-and-run which was found abandoned in nearby Ballinure and Garda technical experts began a forensic examination of the car.

Gardaí have renewed an appeal to anyone who may have witnessed the incident or seen a blue Mazda 6 in Mahon or has any information that might assist them to contact Anglesea Street Station on 021-4522000.

Barry Roche

Barry Roche

Barry Roche is Southern Correspondent of The Irish Times