Bail refused for man charged for allegedly ramming garda car and assaulting garda

The defendant from Northern Ireland has been remanded to Castlerea Prison

Donegal Town Courthouse snow garda van

The man was brought before Donegal District Court on Monday

The court has refused bail for a 31-year-old man charged with dangerous driving whereby he rammed a garda car several times and assaulted a garda.

Duane Farry of 38 Ashfield Gardens, Fintona, Co Tyrone was before Donegal District Court on Monday, having been arrested for the incident which occurred on Sunday, January 24.

He is facing a number of charges which took place in the wider Donegal Town area on January 24. They are: criminal damage to a garda patrol car at Birchill; assaulting Garda Paul McHugh and causing him harm at Rossmore; dangerous driving at Drumlonagher, dangerous driving at Birchill, and two counts of dangerous driving at Tullyearl. 

Farry is also charged with refusing to comply with the requirement to give a breath sample at Ballyshannon Garda Station on January 24.

The court heard evidence from Garda Conor Doherty that Detective Garda Paul McHugh and Garda Catherine Henry were on mobile patrol. At around 1.30pm they observed a car driving suspiciously near the Drumlonagher Roundabout in Donegal Town. The driver failed to stop when indicated to do so.

Garda McHugh pulled his car up alongside the other vehicle. 

“He was rammed,” said Garda Doherty.

A pursuit ensued. Garda McHugh overtook the defendant’s vehicle and was subsequently rammed from behind.

Garda Doherty gave evidence that he was waiting at the Tullyearl roundabout. 

“I observed the vehicle coming towards me with Garda McHugh behind it with lights activated,” he said. 

The garda told the court that the defendant’s vehicle went round the roundabout in the wrong direction, followed by Garda McHugh whose car was again rammed. 

The defendant lost control of the car and he took off on foot through fields, followed by Garda McHugh and Garda Doherty.

In the course of apprehending the defendant, Garda McHugh was assaulted, resulting in his finger being dislocated.

Garda Doherty said the defendant was extremely aggressive and it took four gardaí to get handcuffs on.

Farry continued to be highly abusive while being arrested.

At Monday’s sitting of Donegal District Court, Inspector David Durkin said that gardaí objected to bail.

Having heard the objection as outlined by gardaí, Judge Kevin Kilrane agreed not to grant bail.

“That is due to the probability that he will not turn up for this trial based on his attempts to avert trial,” said the judge. “He risked life and limb of himself and the garda.”

The judge said there was also a strong likelihood of Farry committing further offences if granted bail.

The defendant was remanded in custody to Castlerea Prison. He is due to appear by videolink to Sligo District Court on Friday.

According to a separate statement issued by gardaí, four passengers who were in the defendant’s car remained by the roadside while Farry took off on foot. They were arrested and later released. 

Gardaí also said in the statement that a shot was discharged from a Garda firearm during this incident and that GSOC has been notified.

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