While you were chanting. A strange arrest on O’Connell St.

In Blog, Culture, Politicsby Fedayn36 Comments

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The young man whose arrest featured in a video we were sent on Saturday, which went somewhat viral, has published his account of the events. We have had lots of requests for updates on this story. Here we post his report and a link to the full text:

At around 2:45 PM, on Saturday the 6th of July, I was standing on O’Connell Street at the counter demo to Youth Defence’s astroturfed “Rally for Life” march. There was an extremely heavy police presence around the pro-choice side of the demonstration, with about a dozen of easily identifiable “undercover” cops present. At around this time I was notified by somebody near me (whom I didn’t know) that the cops were hassling somebody (searching them and forcing them to give their details) seemingly arbitrarily, so I went over to have a look to see what was going on.

As soon as I came within two feet of what was happening, the cops instantly pushed me away and told me that I was “interfering”. The cop that pushed me had the cheek to say “don’t assault me!”. I replied to him saying “you’re assaulting me” and he said “I will assault you!”. I still wanted to see what was going on, so I came back, but they pushed me away again and told me that I would be arrested if I tried to come back any more times. I asked the cop that pushed me away what provision in the law he was using to deny me my right to be there. He mentioned Section 8 of the Criminal Justice (Public Order) Act, 1994. I knew however that that provision only applies if I was or had been acting contrary to the provisions of sections 4, 5, 6, 7 or 9 of the same act, which basically amount to either being drunk, threatening and/or insulting somebody, or blocking traffic, none of which I was or had been doing, so I went back one more time.

Seconds later a cop grabbed a hold of me from behind, and many more soon joined in. They had me pinned on the ground with my hands behind my back. They were trying to put handcuffs on me, but from what I heard them saying, it sounded like they were having difficulty doing so. I heard one of the cops saying to another “no, that’s my hand”. They dragged me across the road and forced me into the back of a paddy wagon. While they were dragging me across the road, and after they had gotten me away from the larger mass of people, they started talking about pepper spraying me, but seemingly decided against it.

To read the rest of his account click through to the original here

Here are two videos of the incident


  1. Has this been reported to the Garda Ombudsman do you know

  2. “They were trying to put handcuffs on me, but from what I heard them saying, it sounded like they were having difficulty doing so. I heard one of the cops saying to another “no, that’s my hand”.” —– Idiots can’t even handcuff someone properly!

  3. bloody disgraceful. Last week when i needed the garda they never arrived

  4. why snort. Report it and but pressure on the fuckers

  5. Talking to many people afterwards and having dealt with the Gardaí a lot as a photographer it was noticeable how friendly or even (arguably) sympathetic they were with Choice protestors in general. A lot of people commented on the optics of having young female gardaí dealing with young female protestors. This is the other side of things.

  6. I *will* say that until I saw this video, I thought the Guards were fantastic on the day. On more than one occasion the female Guard in front of me held back some overly aggressive Pro-Lifers who were trying to get in people’s faces. This incident is a real black mark for them.

  7. they were there on that day to protect the pro lifers the main from the pro abortion people

    1. I think you will find we are called pro choicers. We dont call pro lifers anti womeners so please get this right in future. Thank you.

  8. the garda was only doing his duty,this man should not have been allowed past the garda barrier to attack people and their rights to demonstrate.

    1. I dont understand how you think he was attacking anyone when he was watching the police attack another person. He didnt attack anyone, In fact from what I can gather the pro lifers where more aggressive than anyone else there. To knock an innocent bystander to the ground, attempt to handcuff him and then throw him in the back of a police vehicle seems a bit much when he didnt offend or hurt anyone. Hyped up police fed up having to supervise crazy pro lifers from attacking pro choicers possibly? No excuse really though!

  9. For the most part I saw the Guards dragging Pro-lifers back into the street away from the Counter demonstration as they attempted to provoke the counter demonstration. Amongst all the chants of both sides however it was difficult to notice anything other than what was happening near you.

    For the most part it seems the arresting officers were all Plain clothes, so they have a different perspective and attitude to the rest who were mainly keeping the peace. From what we hear in the UK re undercover, and what happens here with Shell to Sea and Republicans, there’s a lot of no nonsense/quick to jump hot heads in plain shirts. A review and proper internal affairs structure is needed.

  10. Is there much bureaucratic nonsense involved with reporting stuff like this to the Garda ombudsman? Would really like to see something done about this.

  11. Boys will be boys. But being so ANDROGYNOUS can get you noticed. Nagging the Gardaí does not help. And asserting that you know more about the law than the Gardaí is lethal. I feel sorry for the guy; but, let’s face it, he had tried really hard, and repeatedly, to get himself arrested. He was “easy meat”. His only “crime” is a lamentable lack of “cop on”.

    1. I think you’re the one who needs to cop on you arsehole.

  12. There was no Garda Barrier. There was no attacks. He has every right to demonstrate. The Garda was not doing his duty. In fact the only thing correct about your statement is your name at the beginning of it.

  13. the gardai themselves formed the barrier between the pro life crowd and the small group of pro abortion supporters.(so it was a human barrrier) the man tried to go right up in front of the pro life crowd therefore literally crossing the line.

  14. absolute truth as the pro choice people shouldn,t have been there in the first place as that alone was being confrontational.Ye were there to be confrontational.The pro life people were there merely to walk in thie rally.A few responded to abusive provocation which as I alredy said came from the pro choicers first as they are only human but that was certainly not their aim,they were not there to confront or respond to confrontation. its the government they are protesting against not you silly lot.

    1. Pro choicers have as much right to make their points heard as pro lifers do. Pro lifers always turn up at pro choice events. You pro lifers always have your petition signing days with disturbing images (that affect the kids walking the street by the way, are you not pro about protecting them?) Those pro choicers had every right to be there and they have every right to be angry. People like you take away the right to necessary health care in this country. We dont all follow your religion or believe every pregnancy is precious yet we are forced to live how you and your kind deem appropriate…so yes, they had every right to be there and defend their right to end a pregnancy they do not feel or can not continue and you have no right to stop them.

  15. Yeah Cathal, being “androgynous” is definitely grounds for arrest, in fact we should probably round up all males with the audacity to have long hair and have the military forcibly cut it like Pinochet and Videla did. Right wing ejiets will be ejiets! Incidentally, did Jesus not have long hair?

  16. Pretty scandalous lies there Paddy, here is a video from the pro abortion side which sows him screaming rapists at women and children, that is not a counter protest that is pure abuse, if this man approached me on the street and scremed rapist at me I would have him arrested. He looks really creepy too uugh.http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aKgm1aTYKaw

  17. same guard was down Hassling people at the Tony rochford protest that day. Has an attitude problem.

  18. Honestly there’s no one that isn’t bothered by the fact that the video cuts in right after the guy is told to exit the crowd and then cut out riiiiight after he goes into the crowd again until he’s told to go away by the garda?

    If yous would show the whole footage, uncut, I’m sure we can make our own opinions by ourselves. Otherwise could you rationally answer this: What reason would the gardai have to take away just THAT one fellow? Would they act on pretense or given orders? Or is it that something that HE might have done stirred the need to get him away?

    Please be fair and post the uncut footage, otherwise you’re just letting us see what you want us to. Thank you!

  19. No he didn’t!!! The arrest happened in the middle of O’Connell Street amongst a crowd of pro choicers. Nowhere near the pro lifers. Are you blind?

  20. If you actually watch the video, he’s referring to rapist priests.

  21. These Garda should be suspended from there duties to the state(that is us the people of this state and the laws we are meant to enact into our constitution through democratic referendum which are meant to reflect the ideology and interests of the people, not the government!), through the actions displayed in this video the Garda are not upholding our rights outlined in the policy of the constitution of our state, there for there actions are either rogue or motivated in the interest of the government, both illegal and considered malpractice and abuse of powers.

    Police have an obligation to uphold the policy of our constitution, if anybody weather it be public or governmental breaches these policies, that body is liable to be arrested and the Garda have an obligation to state policy to enforce these arrests, furthermore if Garda fail to uphold there obligation to the state and act in there own or others interests, they are liable to be suspended from DUTY and liable to be arrested them selves..by a Garda who has a true understanding of there legal obligation and position. (hard to find)

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