INVESTIGATIONS are underway after a woman was found unconscious in the toilets at City Hall following a suspected drugs overdose.
Emergency services were alerted before lunchtime after the woman was found by a member of staff.
The woman, a known heroin addict, was discovered slumped in the toilets, which are located near the main entrance to City Hall on Merchants Quay.
It is understood the woman, who is aged in her 20s, did not have a pulse and that Emergency Medical Technicians (EMTs) who attended the scene as short time later administered a drug which counteracts the effects of heroin.
Gardai, who were on duty at the adjacent court building also provided assistance when the alarm was raised.
The woman, who is from County Tipperary, was resuscitated and taken by ambulance to University Hospital, Limerick for observation.
The Limerick Leader has learned the woman was in the company of another woman and a man who were arrested in the vicinity of City Hall a short time later for suspected drugs offences.
It is understood gardai suspect they also injected heroin and were with the woman when she collapsed.
All three had earlier been in the company of another woman who appeared before Limerick District Court on theft charges.
A spokesperson for Limerick City Council said the toilets where the woman was found are not open to the general public but are made available to those who have business in City Hall. “One woman asked for the key [to the toilets] but three people entered” said the spokesperson, who said the local authority would not be making any further comment as arrests had been made.
The incident, is likely to bring further calls for the fast-tracking of the construction of a new criminal courthouse in Limerick.
Plans for the courthouse, which will be located adjacent to Limerick Prison, have been approved but a contractor has not yet been appointed.
The incident also following revelations last November that plans were being drawn up to employ security staff at the entrance to City Hall during sittings of the district court.
The proposed staffing and security measures, including the erection of new barriers restricting access, were drawn up to deal with the large numbers that gather on the steps of the building on court days.