27-year-old charged with capital murder
Court hears accused denied any involvement in murder of Det Gda Adrian Donohoe five years ago
A crowd gathered outside Dundalk courthouse on a cold Sunday night as news broke that a man was to be charged with the murder of father of two Detective Garda Adrian Donohoe five years ago.
Aaron Brady, aged 27, of 79 New Road, Crossmaglen, Co Armagh, is the first person to be charged in relation to the murder of Detective Gda Adrian Donohoe at Lordship Credit Union, Bellurgan, on January 25th, 2013. He has been charged under Section three of the Criminal Justice Act of 1990 of murdering a Garda in the course of his duties.
Detective Gda Donohoe’s widow Caroline sat in the public gallery during the short hearing, surrounded by former colleagues. Members of the US Department of Homeland Security were also in attendance at the hearing.
The special sitting of the court heard that when the charge of murdering Detective Gda Adrian Donogue in the course of his duties was put to Brady earlier that evening he had replied ‘I strongly deny any involvement in the murder of Detective Garda Adrian Donohoe.
Mr Brady, who had been arrested in Dublin on February 25th and taken to Dundalk Garda Station for questioning, remained silent throughout the short hearing.
Detective Inspector Patrick Marry gave evidence of arresting Mr Brady at The Crescent, at 6.57pm and of charging him after caution at 8.05p.m.
He said that he gave the accused a copy of the charge sheet.
He told Judge John Coughlan that he was seeking for the accused to be remanded in custody to Cloverhill District Court on Friday March 9th.
In reply to Mr Conan Fegan, representing the accused, he said that Mr Brady was released from custody at 6.57pm and immediately re-arrested at 6.57pm for the purpose of charging. A new custody record was filled out and he was held in a cell at the Garda Station as was normal practice.
As Mr Fegan attempted to continue with his questioning, Judge Coughlan said the hearing was simply for the purpose of remand and not for the examination of the investigation.
State Solicitor Mr Fergus Mullen asked that the accused by remanded in custody to appear at Cloverhill District Court on Friday March 9th at 10am with evidence via videolink.
Mr Fegan asked for free legal aid which was granted by Judge Coughlan who told him that his application for free legal aid for two barristers would have to be made at a higher court.
Mr Brady, bearded and wearing jeans, grey shirt, and a black/grey coat with a red trim, was taken from the courthouse through a back door avoiding the waiting media.
Another man in his 60s who was arrested in Dundalk on February 26 as part of the investigation the murder of Detective Garda Adrian Donohoe was released without charge on Saturday night. Garda sources say that a file will be prepared for the Director of Public Prosecutions in relation to that man.
The search for two other people suspected to have been involved in the fatal shooting of Detective Garda Donohoe is continuing in the United States, with the FBI, Homeland Security and the Massachusetts State Police focusing on the Donchester and Quincy areas of Boston.
In an appeal directed at the Irish community in January they stated: ‘Detective Donohoe was protecting his community on the night he was murdered.
Investigators believe people living in Boston and the Upper Norfolk County towns of Massachusetts may have information that could assist the investigation.’
Detective Garda Donohoe was shot while on a cash escort with colleague Dective Garda Joe Ryan on the night of January 25th 2013.
On the fifth anniversary of Garda Donohoe’s murder in January, Chief Superintendent Christy Mangan said ‘many lives were left shattered’ by his death and pledged that gardaí would pursue those responsible ‘to the ends of the Earth’.
The Irish League of Credit Unions has offered a reward of €50,000 for information that leads to any arrest and prosecution in respect of the murder.