Hit and run suspect may have left own car at scene of botched robbery

Man detained by gardaí at courthouse where he was to appear on unrelated charges

 

A man who allegedly used his own car in a botched robbery and left the vehicle at the scene after running over his victim has been arrested.

He was detained after gardai established his identity via his registration plate and then waited for him outside a Co Cavan courthouse where he was scheduled to appear in relation to unrelated charges.

The man was arrested outside the courthouse in Virginia on Tuesday morning by gardai from Finglas, north Dublin, who are investigating Monday’s botched robbery and hit and run.

The incident on Monday occurred when a builder and his colleague were unloading a van on an industrial estate at St Margaret’s village near Finglas and saw the suspect taking items from the van.

Both men ran to stop the thief before he escaped from the furniture company premises where they were working.

The 49-year-old builder stood in the path of the suspect as he tried to drive off in his Mazda car.

But rather than stop, the thief ran over his victim and kept driving, dragging the injured man under his car for about 20 metres.

He then got out of the vehicle and appeared to shout an apology in the direction of the injured party as others rushed to his aid.

The suspect escaped on foot and was gone from the area when gardai arrived.

However, gardai quickly established the car left at the scene had not been reported stolen and that it was linked to a man known to the force.

When gardai from Finglas realised the man they were seeking was due to appear in court in Virginia on Tuesday morning, they went there and arrested him outside the courthouse after his appearance.

The injured man, who is from Co Meath, suffered burns to his upper body as well as head injuries.

He was taken from the scene by ambulance to Connolly Hospital, Blanchardstown, but has since been transferred to Beaumont Hospital, north Dublin.

The Mazda car the suspect was driving when he hit his victim has been undergoing forensic analysis and gardai have also interviewed a number of people who were at the scene at the time.

CCTV footage recorded in the vicinity of the crime scene was also being studied and gardai were hopeful it would aid the investigating team in identifying the driver of the Mazda.