A Garda has spoken of how he had to put out the lights on the ground floor and on the second floor in Glenties Garda Station after reports that an “armed shooter” was approaching the station.
Another garda told Glenties District Court how he had to bring a suspected drunk driver into the centre of the station and away from the windows, for safety reasons, during the brief incident.
The emergency happened while the suspected drink driver was being observed for the customary 20 minutes period, the court heard.
The court heard the defendant was brought to the station at quarter to twelve that night, and the period of observation began at twenty past midnight, However, it was during this period that gardai learned that there was an armed gunman making his way towards the station.
The arresting garda said he did not observe the defendant for the full 20 minutes, but the member in charge was observing, while trying to keep the defendant safe amid reports of an active shooter on the street.
The gunman was then subdued at twenty to one in the morning.
The member in charge agreed that it was not a normal way to conduct the 20- minute period of observation on a suspected drunk driver. but his concern was for everyone's safety.
A defence solicitor asked the court for a direction on a number of issues, suggesting it was an unlawful detention and the State had admitted it was not the usual observation period.
Judge Paul Kelly said the manner the gardai conducted the period of observation was not invalid, and commended both gardai for the courageous and responsible manner they responded to what confronted them.