Man (50) dies after being injured while trying to prevent car theft

Ian McDonnell was found lying on road in Clondalkin, Dublin, last weekend

Ian McDonnell, originally from the west of Ireland but living in Lucan, was a manager at Ozone Car Sales and was married with three children.

Gardaí are investigating after a 50-year-old father-of-three died after receiving serious injuries while trying to prevent the theft of his car in west Dublin last weekend.

Ian McDonnell was found lying on the Robinhood Road in Clondalkin at about 6.15pm last Sunday with life-threatening injuries.

Mr McDonnell, originally from the west of Ireland but living in Lucan, was a manager at Ozone Car Sales and was married with three children.

Gardaí said investigations have established that Mr McDonnell had attended his local business premises a short time earlier.


“While present he intervened to prevent the theft of his car, a grey coloured Volkswagen Passat, registration number 161 OY 1861. In doing so he was carried on the bonnet of his vehicle, a distance, to where he was discovered,” a Garda statement on Saturday said.

Mr McDonnell was removed from the scene by ambulance to Tallaght University Hospital and died on Friday evening.

Family liaison

A family liaison officer has been appointed to Mr McDonnell’s family while a postmortem is due to be carried out on Saturday.

Gardaí at Ballyfermot have conducted witness interviews, door-to-door inquiries and obtained CCTV.

The grey coloured Volkswagen Passat, which left the scene, was located on Limekiln Green, Greenhills in Dublin 12, on Friday. The vehicle has been recovered for forensic examination.

A second vehicle involved in the incident, a silver coloured Toyota Aqua, registration number 152 D 32687, which was stolen in Crumlin last Sunday afternoon, was located burnt out in Ballinascorney, Tallaght on Tuesday. This vehicle has also been recovered to be forensically examined.

Dublin Mid-West TD Mark Ward said it was “an absolute tragedy that a man could lose his life like this, in such terrible circumstances”.

"I'd plead with members of the public, anyone who has any information to contact An Garda Síochána so they can bring this culprit or culprits to task for this tragic incident," the Sinn Féin TD said. "I would also like to offer my condolences to his family, friends and colleagues."

Terrible tragedy

Local Fine Gael Senator Mary Seery Kearney described Mr McDonnell’s death as “a terrible tragedy”.

“The instinct to protect your property is understandable but it’s a terrible tragedy for his family. The gardaí will follow up here. It’s quiet enough around there but there have been reports of people trying to access cars in the general community,” she said.

“There is no doubt about that, I’ve had a number of reports in the last few weeks, gardaí are very much on top of it and aware of it.”

Labour councillor Joanna Tuffy also offered her condolences to Mr McDonnell’s wife and children.

Gardaí in Clondalkin are anxious to hear from members of the public who may have been in the Robinhood Road area of Clondalkin on the evening of Sunday, January 23rd between 5.30pm and 7pm and who may have witnessed any activity which drew their attention, or who may have any video or dash cam footage.

Investigating gardaí are looking for any information on where either car was parked up at any location, or was either vehicle seen in any petrol station or at any other location last week.

Investigating gardaí are also seeking assistance from anyone who may have seen either car in the vicinity of Ballymount, Walkinstown, Tallaght, Kylemore Road or Ballyfermot between 6.30pm and 9pm last Sunday night.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Clondalkin Garda station at (01) 6667600, the Garda confidential line on 1800 666 111 or any Garda station.

Sarah Burns

Sarah Burns

Sarah Burns is a reporter for The Irish Times