Irish News

Tuesday 29 July 2014

Psychiatric assessment ordered on man (27) accused of murdering popular shop manager

Conor Kane

Published 10/05/2014|17:36

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A woman reads floral tributes outside the shopping centre in Kilkenny where Mairead Moran (inset) was killed. Photo: Pat Moore
A woman reads floral tributes outside the shopping centre in Kilkenny where Mairead Moran (inset) was killed. Photo: Pat Moore
Flowers laid at the entrance to Market Cross Shopping Centre in memory of Mairead Moran. Photo: Pat Moore.
Flowers laid at the entrance to Market Cross Shopping Centre in memory of Mairead Moran. Photo: Pat Moore.

A psychiatric assessment has been ordered on a 27-year-old man accused of murdering a popular shop manager on Thursday night.

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Shane Smyth of Flat 3, McGuinness House, Evans Lane, Kilkenny city was charged early this morning with the murder of Mairead Moran (26) who was fatally stabbed while at work in the Holland and Barrett health shop in Kilkenny city’s Market Cross shopping centre.

He was brought before a special sitting of Kilkenny district court in the afternoon and remanded in custody to Cloverhill Prison, to appear at Cloverhill district court next Friday, May 16.

The accused was not called upon to speak during the brief court hearing.

A small crowd of about 20 people gathered outside the courthouse as the accused was driven away in an unmarked garda car, minutes after the end of his court appearance.

Detective Sergeant Colin Furlong gave evidence during the hearing of charging Mr Smyth at 1.37am today. He told the court that he asked the accused if he had any reply to the charge and the accused said: “Not at this moment”.

Inspector Joe Carton applied for a remand in custody until next Friday and this was granted. The accused’s solicitor, Chris Hogan, asked for legal aid and said his client was not working and on disability allowance. He also asked for a psychiatric assessment.

Judge Eamon O’Brien acceded to both requests.

Shane Smyth arrived in an unmarked garda car at the courthouse in Kilkenny at 12.50pm and consulted with his solicitor for some time in the building. He was escorted into the courtroom at 1.20pm and was flanked by two gardaí as he sat waiting for the proceedings to start.

Members of his family sat in the body of the court, some of them in tears, while friends of the murder victim Mairead Moran were in another part of the courtroom and were also visibly distressed during the hearing.

Ms Moran, a single woman originally from Kilmaganny in Co Kilkenny but living in the city for the last number of years, was attacked at about 8.30pm on Thursday night and stabbed a number of times.

After her assailant fled the the shopping centre, she was helped by passers-by and staff from the nearby SuperValu store but despite the attempts of paramedics who arrived at the scene and doctors at St Luke’s Hospital, she was later pronounced dead in the hospital.

She was daughter of Margo and Peter Moran who run a grocery shop in Kilmaganny, and younger sister of Colette and Michelle.

Shane Smyth, originally from Knocktopher but living in Kilkenny city, was arrested in the Loughboy area on Thursday night and detained since then for questioning under section 4 of the Criminal Justice Act.

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