New inquiry granted into mysterious death of Bunratty manager

Family of Patrick Nugent seek wide-ranging public inquiry into 1984 death

Patrick Nugent, a 23 year-old banqueting manager in Bunratty, died in the early hours of February 11th, 1984.

Patrick Nugent, a 23 year-old banqueting manager in Bunratty, died in the early hours of February 11th, 1984.

 

A Clare family has won a 31-year battle to secure a new State inquiry into the mysterious death of a 23 year-old banqueting manager in Bunratty in the early hours of February 11th, 1984.

While the terms of reference for the inquiry into the death of Patrick Nugent from Feenagh, Sixmilebridge, have yet to be determined, his family have called on the Department of Justice to set up a wide-ranging public inquiry in this death as quickly as possible.

This follows a lengthy campaign by Mr Nugent’s late parents, Joe and Nellie, and his brothers, Martin and John.

The death of Mr Nugent was one of the 320 cases examined by the Independent Review Mechanism set up by Minister for Justice Frances Fitzgerald, following a complaint made by the family relating to alleged Garda misconduct in June 2014.

The review recommended that the minister should appoint a person pursuant to Section 42 of the Garda Siochána Act to inquire into the circumstances surrounding the death of Mr Nugent. In a letter to John Nugent, the Minister confirmed she had accepted the recommendation.

But John Nugent said the family do not want the inquiry to be established solely on the provisions of Section 42 of the Garda Siochána Act because that means its findings can’t be admissible in subsequent criminal proceedings.

The family said they believed the new inquiry should examine evidence provided during the inconclusive trial and inquest, the subsequent Garda internal investigation and all parties involved in these proceedings.

“We want this inquiry to be completed in a timely fashion as quickly as possible and don’t want it dragging on for years and years. We need the inquiry to give us answers over what exactly happened Patrick that night,” John Nugent said.

“This inquiry should have been conducted at least 25 years ago. I suppose it is better late than ever,” he said.