Fleeing fugitive caught after 20-mile chase
A DESPERATE fugitive who escaped from a courthouse after being sentenced yesterday took gardai on a 20-mile car chase in which he smashed through a railway barrier and drove the wrong way along a dual carriageway.
The 21-year-old foreign national made a break for freedom after he was sentenced for an offence, believed to involve theft, at a court sitting in Roscommon just before lunchtime.
Superintendent Aidan Glacken said it was extremely fortunate no one was injured during the incident.
"People had to get out of his way and we had a lot of calls from motorists who were very frightened," he said.
The man got into a car and headed towards Athlone, Co Westmeath. During the 30-minute pursuit he slammed through a railway barrier at Knockcroghery.
At Athlone he turned onto the carriageway on the Roscommon exit driving against the flow of traffic, before doing a U-turn back towards the town.The road was closed due to roadworks and the man crashed the car and ran off.
Two gardai arrested him at the Athlone Regional Sports Complex.