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resisted arrest Man (22) to be sentenced for shooting pellets at chasing gardai with a fake M4 assault rifle

Tommy Mannah pleaded guilty at Cork Circuit Criminal Court to dangerous driving and using an imitation firearm to resist arrest.

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Tommy Mannah.

Tommy Mannah.

Tommy Mannah.

A 22 year old North Corkman has been remanded in custody after he admitted firing shots from imitation guns and injuring a garda before leading gardai on a high speed chase which ended when gardai used a stinger to stop his car and tasered him after he repeatedly fired shots at them.

Tommy Mannah, who grew up in Mallow, pleaded guilty at Cork Circuit Criminal Court to dangerous driving on Old Youghal Road in Cork on July 3, 2020 and using an imitation firearm to resist arrest on the M8 at Ballynahina, Rathcormac on July 4, 2020.

Det Sgt Kieran O'Sullivan told how Mannah had a row with his girlfriend in their rented flat at Mount Vernon View in Cork at around 11pm on July 3 and Mannah started firing two intimation firearms he had, a M4 assault rifle and a Heckker & Koch sem-automatic pistol, in their flat.

The guns fired pellets which could cause injury and one of the guns went off striking Mannah's girlfriend in the eye before he began shooting out the window of the flat.

He later emerged on to the street and began shooting the guns, prompting members of the public to contact gardai.

A number of garda units responded, all believing the guns to be real but gardai could find no trace of Mannah who returned to his flat only to emerge as Sgt Colin Greenway was speaking to two female witnesses and he began firing at him.

Sgt Greenway, who was in uniform, ushered the women to safety before Mannah confronted him and began firing at him from a distance of less than five metres, forcing Sgt Greenway to take cover behind a parked car as he repeatedly told him to drop the guns.

Sgt Greenway realised on seeing the flash from the guns that they were not real firearms and emerged from behind the car and held out his arms to show he was unarmed only for Mannah to tell him to "get the fuck back" and fire at him again, hitting him in the arm.

Mannah then jumped into his girlfriend's VW Golf and took off in the direction of Military Hill and on to the Old Youghal Road and down Silversprings on to the Lower Glanmire Road where he began firing out the window of the car at members of the Armed Support Unit who were pursuing him.

He drove through Glanmire village still firing at the ASU and joined the M8 motorway, crashing through a barrier on the toll plaza and only coming to a stop when Gardai from the North Cork Divisional Traffic Unit in Fermoy deployed a stinger that punctured the tyres of his car.

Det Sgt O'Sullivan said that Mannah continued firing at armed members of the ASU after he exited his car, despite the ASU officers repeatedly calling him to drop his weapons, which they believed were real firearms, only for Mannah to get back into the car and continue firing, so they returned fire.

Members of the ASU hit the car several times with shots before Mannah again exited the car and gardai again ordered him to drop his weapon and while he dropped one gun, gardai were fearful he might have another hidden behind his back so they tasered him and subdued him.

Mannah, who was under the influence of intoxicants at the time, was arrested and taken to Fermoy Garda Station but was later taken to Cork University Hospital where he was treated for an injury to his jaw which he sustained when he crashed into the toll plaza barrier.

He was later arrested after doctors said he was fit to be interviewed and he was taken to Mayfield Garda Station for questioning where he made a number of admissions, including owning and discharging both the imitation firearms.

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Det Sgt O'Sullivan told the court that Mannah, who was born in Sierra Leone but came to Ireland at the age of three, had grown up in Mallow but had moved out of the family home when he started becoming aggressive; he had moved back home in 2018.

Mannah had three previous convictions, two for public order and one for driving under the influence of drugs, but since he had obtained High Court bail on these charges he had been taking anti-psychotic medication and had not come to gardai attention, he said.

Cross-examined by defence counsel Siobhan Lankford SC, Det Sgt O'Sullivan agreed that Mannah was under the influence of either drink or drugs on the night in question and he confirmed that Sgt Greenway had since made a good recovery from the injury he sustained on the night.

Ms Lankford said she believed that Mannah would benefit from a probation report and Judge Sean O Donnabhain said that while the events of the night were quite extraordinary, he agreed to the request for a probation report and remanded him in custody to appear again on September 20.

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