Monday 19 August 2019

Teen and man arrested as hit-and-run involving Irish champion boxer upgraded to murder investigation

  • Kevin Sheehy (20) was killed in the incident in Limerick early on Monday morning
  • A vehicle has been seized by the gardai
  • Gardai are investigating whether the young boxer was deliberately struck
  • Two men arrested on suspicion of murder
Kevin Sheehy, St.Franics, Limerick during the 2018 IABA Elite Boxing Championships Semi-Finals at the National Stadium in Dublin. Photo by Barry Cregg/Sportsfile
Kevin Sheehy, St.Franics, Limerick during the 2018 IABA Elite Boxing Championships Semi-Finals at the National Stadium in Dublin. Photo by Barry Cregg/Sportsfile
Kevin Sheehy died after he was knocked down on the Hyde Road in Limerick (Ken Moore/PA)

Aine Kenny, David Raleigh, Robin Schiller and Amy Molloy

GARDAI have arrested a teenage boy and a 28-year-old man in connection to their investigation into a hit-and-run incident which claimed the life of a talented young boxer.

Kevin Sheehy (20), from John Carew Park in Limerick City, was killed in the incident on Hyde Road in Limerick. The fatality occurred at approximately 4.40am this morning. Mr Sheehy was on the footpath on Hyde Road when he was struck.

Independent.ie has learned that a teenager has been arrested as part of the investigation into the murder.

The 18-year-old was detained along with a 28-year-old male in the Midlands by local gardai this evening.

They will be quizzed by detectives from Limerick in relation to the hit and run which led to Mr Sheehy suffering fatal injuries.

Gardai are continuing to appeal for anyone with information on the incident, particularly anyone in the area around the time of the collision, who may have dash cam footage, to contact them at Roxboro Road Garda Station on 061 214 340 or the Garda confidential line at 1800 666 111.

Kevin Sheehy, who lost his life in a fatal hit and run incident early on Monday morning
Kevin Sheehy, who lost his life in a fatal hit and run incident early on Monday morning

Chief Superintendent Gerard Roche announced at a press conference this afternoon that gardai recovered an English-registered black Mitsubishi SUV. The SUV had a partial reg of WB52, and was found in a residential area close to the Gaelic Grounds.

The vehicle was abandoned but not burnt out.

Independent.ie understands that investigating gardai are probing whether the young man was deliberately struck by the vehicle.

The vehicle believed to be involved in the incident, a black Mitsubishi Shogun jeep, failed to remain at the scene.

Mr Sheehy, a member of St Francis boxing club, was crowned the Hull Box Cup heavyweight champion about two weeks ago - the latest in a series of impressive results in the ring.

He was an amateur boxer, but was hoping to become professional, according to his coach, Ken Moore.

Mr Sheehy was also excited to welcome his first baby into the world in just a five weeks time, with his childhood sweetheart girlfriend.

"He won five Irish titles, he competed at under 22 level," said Coach Moore.

Kevin Sheehy
Kevin Sheehy

"He was some kid. He was from a 'rough' estate, but he stepped away from all that," he told Independent.ie.

"There were people from there who went to jail, who got involved in other things... he was just saying how lucky he was to have not gotten involved in that."

"He was just the best I've ever worked with, a good person," he said.

Coach Moore appealed for anyone with information to come forward. "This was a lad who was never in trouble," he said.

"He had a big future ahead of him."

Celtic Eagles Galway, a boxing club based in Briarhill in Galway city, often worked with St Francis boxing club.

"He spent a lot of time sparring with my lads," said coach Pawel Popko.

"We were very close as clubs, we used to meet each other often.

"He was honest, very genuine, very focused on boxing. From a coaching point of view he was fantastic, did everything that was asked.

"He was a very nice kid, everybody loved him, he was very chatty, would always talk to our lads," the coach said.

"It's hard to talk about him, we are still in shock," said Coach Popko, getting emotional.

Boxing clubs around the country are paying tribute to the young man on social media.

Gardaí are appealing for anyone with information on the incident, particularly anyone in the area around the time of the collision, who may have dash cam footage, to contact them at Roxboro Road Garda Station on 061 214 340.

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