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Gardai killed by joyrider 15 years ago are remembered


Tony Tighe

Tony Tighe

Michael Padden

Michael Padden


Tony Tighe

Two gardai killed by a teenage joyrider in Donnybrook 15 years ago have been hailed for their pride and dedication to the job.

Garda Tony Tighe and Garda Michael Padden, who were stationed at Donnybrook, died in a collision in the early hours of Sunday, April 14, 2002.

The pair were just 45 minutes into their early morning shift when a stolen car - travelling at maximum speed - crashed into their patrol car at the White's Cross Junction near Leopardstown in Stillorgan.

The two officers were trying to clear cars from the path of the stolen vehicle when it hit their stationary squad car at a speed of up to 190kmh.

Speaking on the 15th anniversary of their deaths yesterday, Superintendent Gerry Delmar, of Donnybrook Garda Station, said both men remain in the thoughts of gardai at the station.

"The thoughts and prayers of the Donnybrook district are today with the families of our late colleagues Garda Tony Tighe and Garda Mike Padden on the 15th anniversary of their tragic death in the line of their duty," said Supt Delmar.

"Both Tony and Mick are fondly remembered by their colleagues and friends, and by the entire community of Donnybrook, where they served with pride and dedication."

Gda Tighe, a married man with a family of four, was a stalwart of the force.

He had 32 years of service under his belt and, having grown up in nearby Ranelagh, was based in Donnybrook for all of his career.


Gda Padden, from Belmullet in Co Mayo, was living in Dublin with three of his classmates from the Garda College in Templemore.

Their deaths deeply shocked the nation and led to an outpouring of grief and demands for action against joyriders.

Raymond Dowdall (30), who was aged just 16 at the time, was given an eight-year sentence and a 30-year road ban in 2003 for killing the two gardai.