Family urges information on December 2015 murder outside pub

Darren Kearns left Cumiskey’s pub on Blackhorse Ave before several shots fired into car

Darren Kearns (34) had just left the Rising Phoenix Chinese restaurant  on Blackhorse Avenue in December 2015. A man approached with a gun and fired several shots into a car Kearns was in. He was hit several times and was pronounced dead at the scene. File photograph: RTÉ Crimecall

Darren Kearns (34) had just left the Rising Phoenix Chinese restaurant on Blackhorse Avenue in December 2015. A man approached with a gun and fired several shots into a car Kearns was in. He was hit several times and was pronounced dead at the scene. File photograph: RTÉ Crimecall

 

The family of a man murdered outside a restaurant in Dublin in 2015 have appealed to the public for information on his death.

Darren Kearns (34) had just left the Rising Phoenix Chinese restaurant above Cumiskey’s pub on Blackhorse Avenue, close to the Cabra Gate of the Phoenix Park, in December 2015. A man approached with a gun and fired several shots into a car Kearns was in. He was hit several times and was pronounced dead at the scene.

Kearns had recently been released from prison after he had been sentenced to six years for the sale or supply of € 1.8 million worth of cannabis in February 2012.

He was jailed after gardaí stopped him and his brother in a van at Ballyboughal in Dublin and seized 145kg of cannabis.

He had been convicted of a separate charge in relation to the sale or supply of drugs in 2011 but did not serve jail time.

Road offences

Apart from some road traffic offences, he had not otherwise come to the attention of gardaí.

Speaking to RTÉ’s Crimecall, Kearns’s father Philip spoke of the strong bond they once shared.

Gardaí outside Cumiskey’s pub on Blackhorse Avenue on December 31st, 2015, after Darren Kearns was shot dead the previous night in the car park. File photograph: Colin Keegan/Collins Dublin
Gardaí outside Cumiskey’s pub on Blackhorse Avenue on December 31st, 2015, after Darren Kearns was shot dead the previous night in the car park. File photograph: Colin Keegan/Collins Dublin

“People say you can’t be a father...and a best friend. We were….and that’s how close we were as a family and a unit.”

His mother Frances recalled the final time she saw him: “The last memory I have with him…..he was so happy, we were going away, and the next memory I have he was coming home in a box.”

On the evening Kearns was murdered, his family came to the scene of the shooting. “Next I hear everyone was roaring that he was gone. It’s very hard to look at your child lying in the cold night...lying on the ground,” said his mother.

She said his death had affected all the family deeply, as she tries to come to terms with it: “I got a lot of love from the short time I had him. A lot of laughter... and sadness as well.”

‘Memories and a headstone’

Kearns’s father also outlined how he struggles with the loss of his son: “Didn’t I bury two people that day – my son and my best friend... The only thing we have now is these photographs...memories and a headstone,” he said.

His mother appealed to the public for help regarding the investigation.

“If you know anything, as small as it is, please, please just come forward.’’

Gardaí are appealing directly to those who may have information about Darren’s murder.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Crimecall on 1800 40 50 60.