I thought I was going to die: 'He said 'are you ready for it girls?' and then pulled a handgun out of his pocket''
A man has been arrested after he brandished an imitation firearm at two young women in Dublin city centre.
Shannon Cloak (18) from Kildalkey, Co Meath, said she and a 17-year-old friend were resting on steps in Crown Alley in Temple Bar on Tuesday afternoon when the man approached them.
"A man walked past us carrying a bag. He looked like he was aged in his 60s. Then he stopped and turned around and said to us 'Are ye ready for it, girls? Are you ready for it girls?' and then pulled a handgun out of his pocket," Ms Cloak said.
Gardai have since established that it was an imitation firearm.
"He was waving the gun around and was pointing it at us. I just froze. I wondered was I going to die. It was terrible," she said.
"He must have been standing over us with it for 30 seconds to a minute.
"We were absolutely terrified," she added.
He then walked away down the street, leaving the two young women in a state of shock.
He "seemed excited" and was "smiling" as he waved the gun around, Ms Cloak said.
The teenager immediately dialled '999' and reported the incident to gardai. Several officers from Kevin Street Station arrived and the two young women accompanied detectives as they drove around searching for the culprit.
The man was wearing a red jacket and a hat and was carrying a plastic bag. A garda spokesman confirmed that an incident concerning a male with a firearm was reported to them at 3.45pm on Tuesday.
A search was undertaken and "a man was arrested later at Marrowbone Lane", a garda spokesman said.
Gardai seized an imitation handgun. The man detained by gardai was aged in his 50s.
"It's very dangerous for someone to do what he did. We got a terrible fright," Ms Cloak said.
The man was later released without charge.