George Nkencho inquest hit with further delay

GSOC investigators had told Dublin City Coroner’s Court last June that they expected their investigation into the shooting to be completed by the end of the year.
George Nkencho inquest hit with further delay

Digital Desk Staff

The Garda Ombudsman is expected to seek a further adjournment today in the inquest into the shooting dead by an armed garda of George Nkencho almost a year ago.

As the Irish Examiner reports, GSOC investigators had told Dublin City Coroner’s Court last June that they expected their investigation into the shooting to be completed by the end of the year.

Mr Nkencho, aged 27, was shot outside his family home in Clonee, west Dublin, on December 30th, 2020.

Gardaí had been called to an incident nearby involving a man, Mr Nkencho, who had allegedly assaulted a shop assistant and was reported to be brandishing a knife.

Uniformed gardaí requested the man drop the knife and after he failed to do so, sought armed support.

When the Armed Support Unit arrived they came across Mr Nkencho outside a house. It is not clear if the armed gardaí knew it was his home or if the people inside were family.

The gardaí, who were trying to ensure he not get inside the house armed, repeatedly requested he drop his weapon.

Multiple shots were subsequently discharged. Members of his family were inside the house. Afterwards, they said Mr Nkencho had a mental illness.

Criminal investigations

In June, coroner Dr Myra Cullinane adjourned the inquest until today, stating that the inquest could not go ahead until the conclusion of criminal investigations.

It is expected GSOC officers will explain to the coroner that they were still examining further lines of inquiry that had arisen during the investigation.

It is not clear how long an adjournment GSOC would like to have and it will be up to Dr Cullinane to suggest one.She may ask GSOC officers how much work is yet to be conducted and how long they expect that will take.

In a recent statement, GSOC said that they informed the Nkencho family about the status of their investigation on December 1st.

GSOC said they were able to confirm to the family that significant progress had been made, which they said was the result of extensive inquiries.

But it said that further inquiries were needed to ensure it could conclude its examination of all lines of inquiry.

It said it would keep the family fully informed of progress and said it intended to conclude the investigation as soon as possible.

Last June, GSOC’s senior investigating officer Stuart Duguid said they were seeking an adjournment until the investigation was concluded.

Mr Duguid said GSOC's investigation was part-way through and that he was looking towards the end of the year to try to conclude matters.

However, he pointed out that investigators have yet to speak to gardaí who were present on the day of Mr Nkencho's death.

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