‘Serious and concerning’ attack on Blacklion officer

AN INVESTIGATION has been launched into what has been described as “a very serious and concerning” attack on a garda officer in a border village in the early hours of Monday morning.
Armed officers were deployed to the scene and an incident room has now been set up following the attack in Blacklion, during which a uniformed, unarmed officer was found injured, confused, and drenched in some type of lighter fluid.
Gardaí were on patrol in the Loughan area at around 2am on Monday, February 28, when they received a call from a colleague requesting assistance. The officer was disorientated and “unable to explain the exact circumstances of the events taking place,” said a spokesman for An Garda Siochana.
Using the control room of the north western region headquarters, the officers were able to locate their colleague using the Garda’s AVPLS (automatic vehicle and personnel location system), and sent uniformed officers to the scene who were supported by the Armed Support Unit.
“The members found their colleague in a disorientated state,” said the spokesman. “His official marked patrol vehicle was present at the scene. There was a strong smell of an accelerant in the air, his Garda uniform was saturated with an accelerant and he had signs of physical injuries.
“The Garda was taken to Sligo University Hospital where he continues to be assessed and receive treatment this morning, for non-life threatening injuries.”
The spokesman added, “The Garda member and his family have and will continue to be provided with the assistance of the Employee Assistance Service and all of An Garda Síochána support services.”
Speaking on Monday, Chief Supt Alan McGovern from the Cavan Monaghan Garda Division said, “This is a very serious and concerning attack on an unarmed member of An Garda Síochána going about their normal duties keeping people safe.
“Thankfully the incident has not resulted in a fatality or other serious injury.
“The exact motive for this attack is yet to be determined but it is extremely concerning that, a member of An Garda Síochána appears to have been targeted and doused in some form of accelerant, the exact intent of this attack is unknown at this time.”
Chief Supt McGovern appealed to anyone with any information to contact gardaí. Investigators are particularly keen to speak with anyone driving on the NI6 in Cavan, passing Loughan House Prison, or the R206 and R207 at their junction with the N16, between 7pm on Sunday 27 and on 3am Monday, and especially anyone with an video footage. Anyone with information can contact Cavan Garda Station at 0035349 4368800, or the Garda Confidential Phone Number 1800 666111 (in the South) or any Garda Station.

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