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US Embassy in Dublin, Ireland

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http://www.examiner.ie/irishexaminer/pages...5418-qqqx=1.asp

Armed gardaí end US embassy duty in drunken brawl

By Seán McCárthaigh

TWO senior gardaí are facing dismissal after they were last year involved in a violent, drunken row while on armed guard at the US embassy in Dublin.

While they were supposed to be guarding the embassy, the pair were drinking in a Ballsbridge pub, where the row first erupted.

An internal investigation has recommended that the men should either resign from the force or be sacked, after they were found guilty of a series of serious disciplinary charges.

The officers, attached to a south inner city Dublin station, have been suspended since the incident.

Both men were uniformed officers, with combined service of 35 years, but were temporarily transferred to plain clothes duties to provide armed security at the US embassy, in Ballsbridge.

An investigation led by Superintendent Philip Moynihan, of Bray, discovered that the men, who were armed with Smith & Wesson handguns, went drinking in a local pub while on duty — a clear breach of garda regulations.

It is understood they visited the popular watering hole, Paddy Cullen’s, in Ballsbridge, at around 9pm, towards the start of a 12-hour shift. They returned to the embassy an hour later to be present for the changeover of the uniformed garda presence at the security hut, before going back to the pub where they had several more drinks.

A violent row developed between the men over whose turn it was to pay for a round of drinks and they had to be pulled apart by members of the public.

The argument continued after they returned to the embassy in the early hours of the morning, witnessed by private security guards and US Marines.

At around 5am, one of the officers involved in the row handed in his firearm to a uniformed garda and announced that he was going home, two hours early.

He was arrested a short time later in Ballymun on suspicion of drink driving, subsequently convicted and banned from driving, bringing the wider incident to light.

The Department of Justice has apologised to US Ambassador James C Kenny.

The DPP did not bring further criminal charges, but the men were separately found guilty of seven charges and five charges, individually, at an internal disciplinary hearing, and fined sums of around €1,000 for each offence.

Click here for irishexaminer.com stories before this date

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