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Car 'was in a hurry' on night garda shot dead, court told

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Aaron Brady. Picture: Ciara Wilkinson

Aaron Brady. Picture: Ciara Wilkinson

Aaron Brady. Picture: Ciara Wilkinson

A murder trial witness has said she recognised a car that was traveling "in an awful hurry" on the night a garda was shot dead during a credit union robbery.

Frances Malone was giving evidence in the trial of Aaron Brady, who denies the capital murder of Detective Garda Adrian Donohoe.

She told Lorcan Staines SC, for the prosecution, she was driving home with her husband some time after 9pm on January 25, 2013 when she saw two cars coming towards her "very, very fast" near the Ballymascanlon roundabout, a short distance from Lordship Credit Union where Det Gda Donohoe was shot dead.

Both cars had their headlights on and although she flashed her lights to tell them to dip they kept shining their full beams. "They were blinding me," she said and she was therefore unable to identify the make or model of either car or their licence plates.

Aaron Brady (28), of New Road, Crossmaglen, Co Armagh, has pleaded not guilty to the capital murder of Det Gda Donohoe (41) who was then a member of An Garda Síochána on active duty on January 25, 2013 at Lordship Credit Union, Bellurgan, Co Louth. Mr Brady has also pleaded not guilty to a charge of robbing around €7,000 in cash and assorted cheques on the same date and at the same location.

Mervyn McBride told the court he was driving south on the Cortamlat Road in Armagh when he saw a dark-coloured Volkswagen coming towards him fast. About 150 metres after that he saw another car traveling in the same direction, also at speed.

The witness agreed with defence counsel Justin McQuade that in a statement to gardaí he said the Volkswagen appeared to have an English registration plate.

The jury also heard from a number of officers from the Police Service of Northern Ireland who searched the area near the Cumsons Road, off the Chaleybeate Road, where a burned out Volkswagen Passat was found.

The trial continues in front of Justice Michael White.

Irish Independent