Locals in shock over shooting in broad daylight
THE walkway off the Grand Canal where a young man was fatally shot is normally a mecca for dog-walkers and joggers.
But it was unusually quiet and deserted when a gunman opened fire on Michael Kelly around 10.30am yesterday.
Shocked locals said the shooting, just metres away from the Suir Road stop of the Luas Red Line, near Davitt Road in Inchicore, took place as people were going about their daily business.
Scores of schoolchildren were playing football across the road at the Good Counsel GAA club, oblivious to the horrific scene that had unfolded.
A local resident said he heard a loud bang and minutes later saw garda cars streaming to the quiet residential street where the young man's body lay slumped on a grassy footpath.
Within minutes, a blue tent was placed over his body after emergency services pronounced the 27-year-old father of three dead and a team of detectives and forensic investigators was combing the area for clues.
"There's normally people walking their dogs around here. There are a couple of people who are usually there each morning doing yoga at that same spot," he said of the scene of the shooting.
Nearby, the family of the man's partner was inconsolable as news of the shooting spread.
"The girlfriend was sitting there with her arms crossed," he said, pointing to a spot off the canal where a garda cordon had been erected immediately after the shooting.
"People got out of a taxi and ran out crying," he said.
Neighbours placed a bouquet of flowers near the crime scene and said a silent prayer, before friends and family gathered at the edge of the cordon and watched in horror and disbelief when Mr Kelly's body was eventually removed from the scene around 3pm.
A car, believed to have been used by an accomplice who collected the killer from the scene, was found burnt out in neighbouring Rialto.
According to local residents, Mr Kelly, known affectionately as 'Kellier', had three children, including a five-month old son, and was well known in the area.
Gardai said he was known to them but was not a major player in the crime scene.