Page last updated at 17:22 GMT, Thursday, 3 July 2008 18:22 UK

Irishman shot dead by US police

Andrew Hanlon had been living in the state of Oregon
Andrew Hanlon had been living in the state of Oregon

An Irishman shot dead by US police suffered from mental health problems, according to his mother.

Andrew Hanlon, 20, from the Dundrum area of Dublin, was killed in Silverton, in the north-western state of Oregon, on Monday.

Dorothea Hanlon said she cannot afford to travel to the US and police have told her nothing about her son's death.

It is understood the police officer who shot Mr Hanlon was responding to a reported burglary.

Few details have been released about Mr Hanlon's death, including whether or not he was carrying a weapon.

Mr Hanlon had moved last July to Silverton, where his sister lives with her husband. He lived with them before moving out to live on his own.

His sister, Melanie Heise, said a protest had been held by residents in the town following the shooting.

Map of USA

"We live in a town of 9,000 people and there hasn't been a shooting in 20 years," she said.

"It's a quiet environment and people are appalled because they want to know why there was such excessive force used.

"They are wanting to know why there wasn't Taser used, which police officers have available to them here, instead of a gun."

Placed on leave

The officer involved has been placed on administrative leave.

Mrs Heise praised the Irish Department of Foreign Affairs which has been assisting the family, but said US bureaucracy has caused added difficulties.

Mr Hanlon's body is being kept in a funeral home in Silverton.

Dorothea Hanlon said she does not have the expected 10,000 euros to bring him home, while the 4 July US holiday means a death certificate will not be available until Tuesday.

"I have been in contact with the police department there - they wouldn't speak to me," she said.

"They put me on to the district attorney's department. I left a voicemail, I've emailed, and they haven't come back to me. Nobody will speak to me and tell me anything."

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