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'Popular and well liked' - tributes paid to boy (13) who died in Westmeath crash

  • Road crash has been referred to An Garda Síochána Ombudsman Commission (GSOC)

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Recovery vehicles remove the car from scene of a fatal crash on the outskirts of Delvin Co. Westmeath where a teenager lost his life   Picture; Gerry Mooney

Recovery vehicles remove the car from scene of a fatal crash on the outskirts of Delvin Co. Westmeath where a teenager lost his life Picture; Gerry Mooney

Recovery vehicles remove the car from scene of a fatal crash on the outskirts of Delvin Co. Westmeath where a teenager lost his life Picture; Gerry Mooney

The local community in Delvin in Westmeath is "shocked" this evening following the death of Joseph Anderson (13) in an early morning collision, which has been described as "an awful tragedy".

An investigation has been launched and another teenager is in a critical condition.

Gardaí say the boy died in a single vehicle fatal road crash that occurred in the Lisclougher Great area of Delvin, Co Westmeath, this morning at around 2.15am.

It is understood the car involved, which was carrying five people, had come to the attention of gardaí before the collision and a referral has been made to An Garda Síochána Ombudsman Commission (GSOC).

Sinn Féin TD Johnny Guirke said that this was an "awful tragedy" that "you wouldn't wish on anyone".

"I would like to offer my deepest sympathies and thoughts to Joseph's family," he said.

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A Garda vehicle believed to be involved in a fatal crash on the outskirts of Delvin Co. Westmeath where a teenager lost his life   Picture; Gerry Mooney

A Garda vehicle believed to be involved in a fatal crash on the outskirts of Delvin Co. Westmeath where a teenager lost his life Picture; Gerry Mooney

A Garda vehicle believed to be involved in a fatal crash on the outskirts of Delvin Co. Westmeath where a teenager lost his life Picture; Gerry Mooney

"They're only kids and it's an awful tragedy. You wouldn't wish it on anyone and it's been a big shock."

"The community in Delvin and in the surrounding area is shocked. Joseph comes from a very popular and very well liked family in the town," said local councillor Paddy Hill this evening.

"It's a very caring community and I know it will rally to support the families during times like these and with everything that's going on with the virus, it really is the worst timing."

The boy was pronounced dead at the scene and his body was removed to the Mourtuary at Midland Regional Hospital, Mullingar.

"I would like to extend my deepest sympathies to his mother, father, aunts and uncles during this time," added Cllr Hill.

Another teenage boy has been taken to Mullingar Regional Hospital and is understood to be in critical condition.

Three other male occupants of the car, all aged in their teens, received non life threatening injuries.

Early indications are that gardai had been looking for a car which had earlier been reported to have been taken without permission.

A statement from GSOC said:

"I can confirm that the incident near Delvin, Co. Westmeath this morning was referred to GSOC under s.102 of the Garda Síochána Act and that GSOC is conducting an examination. The circumstances of the referral was on the basis that gardaí had indicated for the vehicle to pull over however it failed to stop and drove away from the gardaí."

The scene is currently preserved for a technical examination by Garda Forensic Collision Investigators.

Gardaí are appealing to anyone with information, particularly any road users who may have dash cam footage of the area between 1:45am - 2:30am, to contact them at Mullingar on 044 938 4000 or the Garda Confidential Line on 1800 666 111.

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