A Life Upholding the Law

Tom Connolly

The inside story of a lifetime spent fighting crime, from local Garda in Kildare to Detective Superintendent, tackling everything from small local crimes to major national and international investigations.


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336 pages
228x155 mm

Also available as an Electronic Book (ePub)


Tom Connolly joined An Garda Síochána in 1955, following in the footsteps of his father and grandfather. His early days on the force were spent in various villages and towns around Ireland, tracking petty thieves, raiding pubs and patrolling country roads on his bicycle. Back then, before the dawn of DNA profiling, policemen relied on local knowledge and intuition – as well as careful evidence-gathering and interrogation techniques – to make their cases.

Over his forty-year career, Connolly rose to the rank of Detective Superintendent, working on high-profile thefts, assaults and murders with the National Technical Bureau.  

This fascinating memoir offers an insight into the day-to-day work of the gardaí, and celebrates the courage and dedication of all those who risk their lives to keep us safe.

Tom Connolly was born in Charleville, County Cork, in 1934, the eighth member of a family of thirteen. His father and grandfather were both policemen. He joined the Garda Síochána in 1955, and retired in 1994, having risen to the rank of Detective Superintendent. He has been commended on many occasions for his impartiality and conscientiousness in conducting investigations, and was awarded the Gold Scott Medal for valour in 1975. Tom won senior county football championships with Clonakilty and with Round Towers, Kildare, and played senior inter-county football with both Cork and Kildare for a number of years. Tom’s wife Maureen died in 2008.
He has two sons, both Gardaí, and a daughter. He lives in Naas, County Kildare.

this rich memoir offers a unique insight into the day-to-day work of the Garda Siochana. At a time when there are massive changes within the force, Tom Connolly’s unassuming integrity, honesty, grit and perseverance tell the story of a unique police force and a unique life lived with 100 per cent commitment to duty

Vale Star and Mallow Star


Reader Reviews

This is an inspiring story of life as a detective in the Garda Siochana. I thoroughly enjoyed it.

Pat Kildare on 14th October 2016

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