Teenager arrested in connection to suspected arson attack released

Garda’s home in Dundalk was petrol bombed on Sunday, June 7th

The garda was at his home with his heavily pregnant wife and two young children. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

The garda was at his home with his heavily pregnant wife and two young children. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

 

A teenage boy who was arrested in connection with a suspected arson attack on a garda’s home in Dundalk last week has been released without charge.

The male youth was arrested as part of the investigation into the attack on a home in Hawthorn Crescent, Bay Estate in Dundalk on June 7th.

A file is to be prepared for the Director of Public Prosecutions and investigations into the incident continue.

The garda, who is based in the Cavan/Monaghan division, was at his home with his heavily pregnant wife and two young children when what is believed to have been a petrol bomb was thrown at the outside of the house last Sunday night.

The bomb ignited the outside of the house and nearby trees with the heat of the flames cracking the upstairs windows.

The family escaped after being alerted of the flames by a neighbour. They are uninjured but “very shaken”, a source said.

Fire services arrived at the scene in the Bay Estate shortly after 11pm and doused the flames.

The fire station is located a four minutes’ drive from the house. “If it was across town, the house would be gone, no question,” a source said.

It is the third attack on a garda’s home in the Dundalk area since 2018.

Appeal for witnesses

Local gardaí have carried out a technical and forensic examination of the scene and are appealing for witnesses to come forward, particularly “anyone who was in the Bay Estate area between 10.30pm and 11.30pm.

They are also appealing for information on a white van which was seen in the Bay Estate area at approximately 3pm on Sunday.

“Anyone with any information is asked to contact the incident room at Dundalk Garda station on (042) 938 8400 or the Garda Confidential Line 1800 666 111,” the garda said.

Minister for Justice Charlie Flanagan said he was shocked to learn of the “callous attack” on the home of a member of An Garda Síochána.

“This despicable act demonstrates a reckless disregard for human life and the laws of the land which seek to protect us all. The fact that the attack was against the private family home of a garda member, with his young family asleep inside, is both sinister and disgusting,” he said.

“Members of An Garda Síochána perform vital work, strongly supported by the communities they serve. An attack on a garda is an attack on the entire community.”