THE criminal who shot himself in the head after he became involved in a stand-off with unarmed gardai in south Dublin has died from his horrific injuries.
Anthony Ward (31) from Sperrin Road, Drimnagh, died in Tallaght Hospital shortly before 1pm yesterday after the incident that occurred just after midnight on Tuesday morning.
Sources have confirmed that a Garda Siochana Ombudsman Commission (GSOC) investigation into the incident is not focusing on any garda misconduct in the case.
Investigators from GSOC have interviewed Ward's former girlfriend whom he abducted on Monday night which started the tragic series of events that led to his death.
Ward forced the woman into a car near her home at the O'Rahily House flats complex in Ringsend in what was believed to be a domestic dispute following the break-up of a relationship.
He then drove to Crumlin where he is believed to have collected a handgun and then to Templeogue before the tragic incident took place.
The car pulled in at a petrol station on the Spawell Road and the man forced the woman to get out and buy cigarettes.
However, when she was inside the shop, two gardai went to her aid after noticing that she was "injured and highly distressed" with a black eye and bruising to her lip.
Ward fled the scene before crashing near the Spawell roundabout.
He pointed a loaded gun at the officers before shooting himself under his chin as they attempted to approach.
A GSOC spokesperson said last night that it should not be automatically assumed that there is garda misconduct in cases that are referred to its office and that the investigation into this tragic incident is now for the coroner's court.
The dead man had 71 previous convictions, including for drugs and firearms offences, and had links to the 'Fat' Freddie Thompson gang.
At one of his many court appearances, Ward was jailed for six months in September, 2010, for possession of €800 worth of heroin.
That was his sixth drugs conviction at that time.
He already had four convictions for possession of drugs and another two for possession with intent to sell or supply.
The court heard a garda was on duty at 11.05am on July 29, 2009 when he stopped the accused to search him.
He ran away and when he was caught and searched, he had the heroin on him.