A fund to buy a pint for the Brazilian Deliveroo rider who heroically stopped a knife attack in Dublin has hit £190,000.
Father-of-two Caio Benicio, 43, has detailed how he halted a knife attacker on Dublin’s Parnell Square on Thursday.
Mr Benicio was hailed a hero for ending the assault on three schoolchildren and their care assistant outside a school in the north inner city, which left a five-year-old girl in a critical condition.
The care assistant, in her 30s, who works at the school, was in a serious condition after being injured as she put herself between the knifeman and his innocent targets. The two other children, a five-year-old boy and a six-year-old girl, suffered less serious injuries.
Mr Benicio is originally from Rio de Janeiro and moved to Ireland a year ago.
Father-of-two Caio Benicio, 43, has detailed how he halted a knife attacker on Dublin’s Parnell Square on Thursday
The bloodbath was only ended when Mr Benicio (second from right) knocked down the knifeman with his helmet
He spoke of how he used his helmet to hit the man who had attacked the three young children and the care assistant.
A fundraiser has been set up to ‘buy Caio Benicio a pint’.
‘The man’s a hero and the least we can do is buy him a pint, so I’m asking you to donate the price of a pint of Guinness in your local so that he knows the people of Dublin appreciate him,’ the organiser said.
Mr Benicio also said on RTÉ’s Liveline that the Brazilian Embassy has been in contact with him to offer him a medal for his actions.
He told the Irish Independent that he wasn’t scared when he acted on Thursday.
‘I didn’t have time to be afraid. I have two kids myself and I didn’t have time to be afraid, I just acted,’ he said.
Mr Benicio said he originally thought that it was a fight involving a man and a woman.
Police officers work at the scene of a suspected stabbing that left children injured in Dublin, Ireland, on November 23
Police officers work near the scene of a stabbing that left children injured in Dublin, Ireland, on November 23, 2023
A reporter for RTE at the scene said the street was sealed off, but that parents were allowed to enter with assistance from Garda to go up to the school to see their children
Irish police confirmed five people had been injured, including three young children, following the serious incident which occurred shortly after 1.30pm
‘I was working like a normal day. And I was passing by in Parnell Square. For me, at first, it looked like a fight, a normal fight. I slowed down my motorcycle and it was a man and a woman,’ he said.
He then noted how he saw a woman fighting to save a young girl.
‘She was very, very brave. She was fighting for a girl, you know, a little girl. I was like, “what’s happening here” and then I saw him with a knife and he grabbed a little girl,’ Mr Benicio added.
He then witnessed the man stab the little girl.
‘I stopped my bike and I don’t know, I acted by instinct… I took off my helmet and hit him with the helmet on the head,’ he said.
‘I think that made him stop,’ he added.
Mr Benicio said the man fell to the ground and others helped to keep him there.
He said: ‘He fell on the ground and then I hit him a couple of times and some other people started to come to keep him. After that, I went to see the girl.’
Gardai took a statement from Mr Caio after the incident but he was told he was not able to get his motorbike or helmet back yet.
He added that since he moved to Ireland he has been working as a delivery driver in order to send money to his family.
Ireland’s prime minister on Friday condemned anti-immigrant protesters who rampaged through central Dublin after three young children were stabbed, saying the rioters simply wanted to cause chaos, not protect the country’s way of life.
Police arrested 34 people overnight after up to 500 people looted shops, set fire to vehicles and threw rocks at crowd control officers equipped with helmets and shields.
Prime Minister Leo Varadkar said Ireland’s capital had endured two attacks – one on innocent children and the other on ‘our society and the rule of law’
Riot police had no choice but to stand by as a car was burning just a few metres away from them on Thursday
Fires burned all over Dublin on Thursday night after riots broke out in the city centre
A man pushes the shield of an officer from riot police during the protest in Dublin on Thursday
A person faces a police officer near the scene of the stabbing on Thursday
A bus and car on fire on O’Connell Street in Dublin city centre after violent scenes unfolded in the city
A bus and car on fire on O’Connell Street in Dublin city centre on Thursday
Black clouds of smoke billowed into the air after several vehicles were set on fire in Dublin on Thursday
Riot police walk next to a burning police vehicle in Dublin on Thursday
Some 13 shops were significantly damaged or subjected to looting and 11 Garda cars were damaged.
Some Garda members were injured as 400 officers responded to the unrest.
The violence began after rumours circulated that a foreign national was responsible for the attack outside a Dublin school on Thursday afternoon.
Prime Minister Leo Varadkar said Ireland’s capital had endured two attacks – one on innocent children and the other on ‘our society and the rule of law’.
‘These criminals did not do what they did because they love Ireland, they did not do what they did because they wanted to protect Irish people, they did not do it out of any sense of patriotism, however warped,’ Varadkar told reporters on Friday morning.
‘They did so because they’re filled with hate, they love violence, they love chaos, and they love causing pain to others.’
Ireland’s Justice Minister Helen McEntee has said Garda have all the resources necessary to keep people safe in Dublin over the weekend.
Ms McEntee said: ‘What happened yesterday evening following this awful, tragic act was nothing but thuggery.
‘This was a group of individuals who used this horrendous event as an opportunity to wreak havoc in our city, to sew division in our city, they will be responded to with force and gardai responded in the most appropriate way.
‘They have restored order to this city will continue to do so.’
The minister said she met with the senior Garda officers on Friday evening.
‘They have reassured me that every resource necessary to keep people safe in this city over the weekend is in place and will be in place as is needed and for as long as is needed.’