Saturday 25 February 2017

US police probe if Irishman's death was linked to robbery

Mark Hilliard and Brian McDonald

BOSTON police are investigating whether the fatal shooting of Irishman Ciaran O Conghaile was connected to an earlier robbery on the same night.

A wake was held in Boston last night where members of the Irish-American community paid their respects to the "popular and shy" young man from Inis Meain in the Aran Islands.

Mr O Conghaile (36) -- known locally as 'Kiwi' -- was killed in the Adams Corner area of Dorchester on the short 400-metre walk between his home and the Irish Heritage Festival he had been attending.

The incident occurred sometime after he left his friends at around 10.30pm on Sunday. His body was discovered at 1am by an off-duty fireman outside the apartment complex where he lived.

Last night, the Irish-American community praised the police's efforts to capture the perpetrator. On Tuesday night, the area chief as well as around 25 officers and detectives met with residents at a community forum meeting.

Police are currently awaiting autopsy results.

Funeral

A source indicated that in the previous robbery, which occurred at about 10.30pm, two black males approached a woman, telling her they were armed with a gun. When she handed over her money, they fled the scene.

A police spokesman said the case remained under investigation and insisted that they "won't rule out anything".

Mr O Conghaile had earlier attended the Irish Heritage Festival with a number of friends. He is also said to have visited some local bars.

He was a construction worker and as a member of the undocumented Irish community he had not been home for a decade.

Mairin Ui Cheide said: "He was like a character out of Joyce. He was witty and had a great way with words, both in Irish and in English."

The funeral Mass is due to take place in Boston today, then Mr O Conghaile's remains will be flown home to Ireland.

Irish Independent

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