Thursday 19 October 2017

Man dies in shopping centre after fleeing from stabbing on street

A garda and a security man at Longford Shopping Centre into which the victim staggered after being attacked. Photo: Steve Humphreys
A garda and a security man at Longford Shopping Centre into which the victim staggered after being attacked. Photo: Steve Humphreys

Ryan Nugent

A man is being questioned by gardaí after a foreign national was stabbed to death outside a shopping centre.

The victim, who was in his early 30s, was stabbed a number of times in the chest after several confrontations with his attacker in Longford town yesterday.

It is understood the victim and his attacker were involved in an altercation shortly before 12pm yesterday just off Great Water Street.

The victim attempted to flee by running into the Longford Centre nearby.

After rushing into the Longford Centre, the man collapsed onto a bench at the front of a cafe near the top of the centre.

He was found lying in a pool of blood on the bench with multiple chest wounds. Despite being rushed to Mullingar Hospital by emergency services, he was pronounced dead later in the day.

The victim, understood to be originally from Poland, had been living at an apartment complex in the town centre.

A number of areas around the shopping centre were sealed off by gardaí.

Last night the garda regional crime scene investigation unit carried out forensic tests around the bench where the victim collapsed.

A forensic team also carried out searches at an apartment directly across the road from the shopping centre.

The apartment was sealed off by gardaí last night.

It is not yet known whether the confrontation began around the apartment and spilled onto the street or if the attacker was in the apartment after the attack.

A bloodied tissue was found outside the building, which is being examined by forensics.

Footage

However, garda are still investigating whether it is connected to the crime.

Garda sources indicated they are examining clear CCTV footage of the incident. Locals and shop owners said they were shocked by the attack.

One employee in the shopping centre said: "Nobody knows what it's in relation to and it's hard to know if nobody really seen what happened or whether they don't want to know about it or say too much about what they seen."

A 24-year-old man was later arrested by gardaí and was being held at Longford Garda station.

The 24 year old male who was arrested is scheduled to appear at Mullingar District Court on Thursday at 10.30am charged in connection with the fatal stabbing.

“People in Longford are shocked by this happening in broad daylight. It is completely out of the blue. In the last ten years you could count on one hand the amount of murders that have happened in Longford," Fianna Fáil councillor Seamus Butler told independent.ie.

“The poor victim was some mother’s son. Our sympathy goes out to the family. We hope it is an isolated incident and not indicative of a feud between two families.

“I live only 500m from where it happened. A recent meeting of the joint policing committee, of which I’m a member, indicated that in the first ten months of this year, crime is down on all fronts in Longford, so it’s a bit of a shock.”

Gardaí are appealing for anyone who may have been in the Great Water Street/Rue Noyal Chetillon Street or the area of the shopping centre between 11.30am and noon to contact them at Longford on 043-3350570, the Garda Confidential Line 1800-666-111 or any Garda station. Gardaí will hold a briefing this afternoon.

Irish Independent

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