A garda sergeant suffered a broken ankle in an incident during which a man pointed an imitation handgun at a garda in the grounds of Dundalk Garda Station in the early hours of this morning.

Garda Superintendent Gerry Curley confirmed that Sergeant Charlie McNulty had a broken ankle in what he said was "a difficult incident for members to deal with".

Supt Curley said "they were pointed at with what they believed to be a handgun which was dangerous and frightening for them. It was dealt with in a professional manner by them."

The incident began at 5.30am when a taxi driver drove into the station car park with a passenger who was allegedly aggressive and would not leave the taxi.

As gardaí, including Sgt McNulty, went to the assistance of the taxi-driver, the handgun was pointed at one of the gardaí. 

Gardaí managed to disarm the man and he was arrested.

Supt Curley said "he violently resisted arrest and pepper spray was necessitated to help to restrain him."

Sgt McNulty sustained the ankle injury as the man resisted arrest.

"As a result of the efforts to deal with the incident, Sgt McNulty received a serious leg injury and remains in Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital for treatment," he added.

The handgun has been confirmed as an imitation.

The passenger in the taxi, who is in his 30s, was arrested and it is expected that he will be charged in relation to the incident.