This morning, as I walked to work, I happened to glance at the headline of my Metro Family anger at killings verdict. And I thought to myself, this couldn’t be the family of the armed raiders shot while robbing a post office, could it?
Of course it was.
This sort of shite annoys the fuck out of me. Is it sad that you lost a member of your family? Of course. But sometimes family members do stupid things and bad things happen to them. And it is their own fault. These were men attempting to rob a Post Office, armed, the gardaÃ told them to disarm. They didn’t do that so they got shot. It wasn’t for “no reason” it was because they were attempting to rob a post office and threatening the lives of people.
Garda A gave evidence that he heard a loud bang and saw the glass in the security hatch shatter. He believed that the loud noise was a gunshot and shouted “armed garda, drop your gun” as he opened the door leading into the public area of the post office.
At least half-a-dozen witnesses gave evidence indicating they clearly heard the officer warn the raiders to drop their weapons. Some witnesses said the garda gave the warning several times;
one man said he warned them on up to 10 occasions.
I’m not a huge fan of the gardaÃ. But in cases like this, where armed robbers are involved? Then I’m backing them. I’m not even a fan of the death penalty. I think it is a ridiculous punishment and serves no purpose apart from revenge, which is not what I think the justice system should be involved in.
Bereaved mother-in-law Ann Grimes, who reared Griffin’s four children, hit out angrily yesterday.
She said the gardaÃ “knew beforehand they were going to do the job. They should have stopped them”. She added: “they put people in the post office at risk.”
Part of me can understand that coming from the family. After all they have suffered a death. But another part of me is more than a tad annoyed at that sort of attitude. The gardaÃ knew what was going to happen, so they should have stopped them! How exactly? Should they have arrested them despite having no evidence apart from a tip-off? A rumour?
It isn’t as though the gardaÃ didn’t try to intercept the raiders;
However, efforts by gardai to stop the raiders’ car prior to the raid, including cordons on approach roads and vehicle tracking, failed, and the three raiders entered the rear of the building at approximately 8am led by Gavin Farrelly, who was wielding a sledgehammer
Maybe Colm Griffin, who knew he was going to rob a post office with a gun, should have stopped himself. He was the only one responsible for his own actions. He went to Lusk intending to pull a gun on people. He took up a firing position, he put people’s lives in danger.
I’d have more sympathy for the family of the second robber killed. After all he was unarmed when shot. But at the same time if the garda involved believed he was armed that what other option did he have? I don’t say that to let the garda off the hook. More to say that you get involved in an armed robbery then don’t try to play the victim when shots are fired. After all if it had been a shoot everyone then the third individual involved still be alive, would he?
And lets not forget that a garda involved in that operation now has a contract out on him.
Oh, and for the record, I’m not saying that the gardaÃ should be allowed to shoot anyone and then say “he had a gun” obviously there should be an inquest, as happened here, and the fact should come out. But the very idea of turning an armed gunman into an innocent victim is just wrong.