the Garda Ombudsman attended a road block on the Naas to Ballymore Eustace Road on Monday following an incident late on Sunday night where shots were fired by gardai during during an investigation into the activities of organised criminals.
A 30-year-old man, who was in a car stopped by members of the Organised Crime Unit, was arrested at the scene. Gardai have confirmed that the man is not from Kildare. A second car, which failed to stop for Gardai, left the scene.
A road block was set up from Watch House Cross at Punchestown to Ballymore Eustace National School immediately following the incident and the matter is still under investigation. As of Monday evening, the man was still being questioned at Naas Garda Station.
“During the course of this operation a number of shots were discharged by members of the Gardai,” said Garda spokesman Damian Hogan.
“A firearm and a quantity of cash were recovered.”
A garda at the scene confirmed on Monday that gardai would not have “fired unless shots were fired at them first”. “The Garda Ombudsman will now investigate due to the shots that were fired,” he said.
Meanwhile, for the village of Ballymore Eustace it was business as usual on Monday with residents left in the dark over the road block.
Margaret Fogarty, who owns Fogarty’s Mini Market on Main Street, said she was not “surprised” by the news due to the amount of break-ins in the village recently, including her own shop.
“It is not very nice,” she said speaking to the Leinster Leader.
“I’m not surprised as there have been a lot of break-ins going on here. You would be afraid as you don’t know if they are going to be drugged up or have weapons. It is frightening in a small place like this.
“We have been robbed a few times - two or three now. A lot of damage was done to the shop recently. We have two local gardai and they give you their mobile numbers in case you need them. It’s nice of them to do that as they don’t have to. This is a sleepy village normally and there is a good sense of community with no gangs around here, unlike Dublin.”
One local resident, who wished to remain nameless, said that they thought the road was blocked due to an accident.
“I was sure it was a bad accident - just imagine if you happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time?” he said.
According to the Garda Press Office, the Garda Ombudsman has to investigate any matter where it appears that a Garda may have committed an offence or behaved in a way that would justify disciplinary proceedings.