Uzi ‘may have saved murdered garda Adrian Donohue'
GARDA supervisors have demanded the return of the Uzi sub machine gun, which was in use in the force for more than 40 years.
The annual conference of the Association of Garda Sergeants and Inspectors in Sligo today called on Commissioner Martin Callinan to immediately re-issue the Uzi to detective branch personnel.
A senior member of the association's national executive, Walter Kilcullen said the life of Det Garda Adrian Donohoe, who was shot dead by raiders while on cash escort duty at the Lordship credit union in Dundalk last January, might have been saved if he had been carrying an Uzi.
"What happened that night might not have happened if he had been armed with an Uzi," Mr Kilcullen said.
The Israeli weapon was withdrawn from use two years ago after a review of firearms by the garda authorities and has been replaced in the Special Branch and detective branch personnel involved in duties like cash escorts with a Sig semi automatic handgun.
Members of the Emergency Response Unit and the Regional Support Units are now all armed with Heckler and Koch MP7s, a more modern sub machine gun, which is capable of firing ammunition that can penetrate body armour.
But association delegates said they believed the Uzi provided them with better protection against criminals and terrorists.