An illegal barek-nuckle fist fight between two rivals descended into even more violence when an affray involving more than 200 supporters broke out, resulting in gardai being called to the scene and arrests being made.
It is understood that attempts were made to hold the fist fight, organised by members of the Travelling community, at at least two different locations on Tuesday afternoon. According to one source, the fighters and their numerous supporters went head-to-head in the Circular Road area of the city, however, a new location for the bout was sought after Garda patrol cars arrived at the scene. Witnesses then reported a re-match taking place in the Carrowbrowne area.
Reports of a Garda presence at Circular Road were not confirmed by Galway Garda Station, however, a spokesperson did confirm that gardai were called to the halting site in Carrowbrowne at 3.30pm. The Garda spokesperson said: “A pre-arranged fight was held which drew a crowd of around 200. Unfortunately, trouble broke out in the crowd and an affray took place amongst the supporters of the two fighters. Gardai were called to restore peace.”
The spokesperson indicated that further arrests could be made in the coming weeks as the investigation is still on-going. “We are currently looking at footage taken at the scene in an effort to identify individuals,” he said.
Three men were arrested with one being released Tuesday evening and a file is due to be sent to the Director of Public Prosecution. Two other men, Barney McGinley (34 ) of 1 Ballyarnett Park, Racecourse Road, Derry, and Patrick ‘Jaws’ Ward (38 ) of 64 Corrach Bui, Rahoon, Galway, appeared before Galway District Court yesterday charged with committing an affray, contrary to Section 16 of the Criminal Justice (Public Order ) Act at Carrowbrowne halting site and were both granted consent to bail.