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Gardai hunt four teens over death of man in chipper row

GARDAI are still hunting a gang of four teenagers involved in a fatal St Patrick's Day attack.

Joseph Connolly (48) from Knowth Court, Ballymun, was assaulted after a drunken row at a take-away on Ballymun Road at about 9pm on March 17.

He fell after receiving a number of blows outside a nearby pharmacy.

He was taken to Beaumont Hospital where his condition deteriorated overnight and he died on Friday afternoon.

Four teenagers, all male, were identified by gardai as having been involved.

However, the death is not being treated as a murder as investigators do not believe the gang intended to kill Mr Connolly.

Gardai believe words were exchanged between the victim and the teens at the chipper.

They say the attack happened very quickly over something simple, thought to have been an insult.

A garda spokesman told the Herald today there have been no arrests so far in the investigation.

"We're still looking for witnesses in relation to the incident," he added.

Two men presented themselves at Ballymun Garda Station over the weekend and were co-operating with the investigation.

Injuries

Detectives believe the attackers were possibly unaware of Mr Connolly's condition as they had fled the scene quickly.

Mr Connolly suffered head injuries but was conscious when an ambulance arrived for him -- and even talked to paramedics as he got into it.

He was taken to the Mater Hospital but was then rushed to Beaumont, which specialises in head injuries.

It is understood the victim was a heavy drinker.

Gardai said the incident was caught on CCTV cameras and that four men were involved.

Two of the group were suspected of the actually carrying out the assault.

A number of women were also nearby.

The post-mortem examination was carried out on March 19 by the Assistant State Pathologist Dr Michael Curtis.

"The results of the post mortem have been supplied to the investigation team and investigations are ongoing," a garda statement said.

It added that a number of people have been interviewed in connection with the incident.

Mr Connolly was not married and had no children. He is survived by his siblings.

Anyone with any information is urged to contact Ballymun garda station on (01) 666 4400 or the Garda Confidential Line on 1800 666111.

comurphy@herald.ie