Tributes have been paid to Detective Garda Colm Horkan, who lost his life last night after being shot during an altercation in Castlerea.
Gardai say they are appealing for anyone who was in the Castlerea Town Centre area between 11pm and 12:30am last night, particularly any road users who may have dash cam footage, to contact the Garda incident room in Castlerea Garda Station, on 094 962 1635.
While Gardai continue to investigate the incident, it has also been referred to the Garda ombudsman as it involves an official garda firearm. It is understood that a primary line of inquiry into the incident is that Detective Horkan’s assailant seized his gun during the course of an attempted arrest, and shot him with it.
A man, aged in his 40s, was arrested at the scene and remains detained at Castlerea Garda Station under Section 30 of the Offences Against the State Act 1939.
The tributes to Detective Horkan have been led by the President, Michael D. Higgins, and An Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar:
'The death of a garda, active on duty, is a blow to us all' – President Michael D Higgins has paid tribute to Detective Garda Colm Horkan, who died in a shooting incident in Castlerea, Co Roscommon last night | Read more: https://t.co/uy5qSY5iab pic.twitter.com/SVybHDldX7
— RTÉ News (@rtenews) June 18, 2020
I extend my deepest sympathies to the family and friends of the Garda who has died in the course of their duties.
Every day our Gardai put themselves on the frontline of crime prevention, on behalf of all of us. This requires regular acts of bravery and courage.
— Leo Varadkar (@LeoVaradkar) June 18, 2020
Detective Horkan’s colleagues in the Gardai also paid tribute to their late colleague:
Detective Garda Colm Horkan.
RIP – 17th June 2020.
Ar dheis Dé go raibh a anam. pic.twitter.com/wHKVRYMqOA
— An Garda Síochána (@GardaTraffic) June 18, 2020
Detective Horkan becomes the 89th member of the Gardai to lose his life in the line of duty, and the first since the murder of Garda Tony Golden, by dissident Republicans, in Omeath in 2015.
May he rest in peace, and may his memory be a comfort to his family, and those who he loved. The country is grateful for his service, and united in mourning for his loss.