Wednesday 21 August 2019

Community 'in shock' as man found stabbed to death in apparent 'domestic dispute'

The victim, who was named locally as Bruno Rolandi, was discovered with a number of knife wounds at a house in Co Offaly on Sunday night.
The victim, who was named locally as Bruno Rolandi, was discovered with a number of knife wounds at a house in Co Offaly on Sunday night.
Bruno Rolandi was found with a number of knife wounds

Robin Schiller and Amy Molloy

A community has been left in shock after a 54-year-old Italian national was stabbed to death at a house in Co Offaly.

Bruno Rolandi was discovered with a number of knife wounds at the home he shared with his partner in the Ballyfore area of Edenderry on Sunday night.

A Garda forensic team at the scene of the fatal stabbing in Edenderry, Co Offaly. Photo: Mark Condren
A Garda forensic team at the scene of the fatal stabbing in Edenderry, Co Offaly. Photo: Mark Condren

Gardaí believe he was stabbed during an apparent domestic dispute.

It is suspected that he suffered at least two stab wounds.

Local councillor Noel Burke (FF) said the community is in shock and there is a "great sense of sadness" in the area.

"It's very sad. People are deeply shocked that something like that would happen here," he told Independent.ie.

"You see it happening in various places and you don't think of it happening in your locality. It seems to have just happened out of the blue."

Last night detectives were continuing to question a teenage male in relation to the father-of-two's death.

Gardaí are probing if the suspect acted in self-defence during a domestic dispute at the home, possibly to protect a female.

In total, four people are understood to have been in the property at the time of the killing, including the victim and the arrested youth.

Mr Rolandi was originally from the Monza region of Italy but had been living in Edenderry for some time.

Investigating officers were yesterday in the process of informing his relatives in Italy of the tragedy.

A Garda spokesman said that emergency services were alerted to the incident at around 7.48pm and discovered the victim with knife wounds.

"Despite the efforts of the medical personnel, the man in his 50s was pronounced dead at the scene," the spokesman said.

"A juvenile male was arrested in relation to the incident and is currently detained under Section 4 of the Criminal Justice Act, 1984 at Tullamore Garda Station," he added.

Officers from the Garda Technical Bureau arrived at the scene shortly before 11am yesterday to carry out an examination of the property.

A dog was brought out of the house shortly after the examination began and was taken in by a neighbour.

A number of evidence bags, one of which contained a mobile phone, were also removed from the house. State pathologist Dr Marie Cassidy arrived in the afternoon to conduct a preliminary post-mortem examination, before the body was removed to the local mortuary in a black hearse.

Gardaí are currently not looking for anyone else in relation to the incident, with one source stating that the investigation was "focused inside the house" at this stage.

An incident room has been established at Tullamore Garda Station from where the probe is being co-ordinated.

Locals yesterday expressed their shock after news of the killing emerged.

Independent councillor Noel Cribbin said: "Everyone is in total shock. The family would be well known in the area. It is a very quiet area. It is a real tragedy."

Neighbours on the rural roadway where the tragedy occurred also described their devastation at the killing.

"You wouldn't expect this anywhere, but especially not in Ballyfore. I wouldn't know the people who live in that home well, but I saw the ambulance drive down to the house last night. I just thought somebody was after becoming ill. I didn't imagine that it could be a killing," one local woman said.

Another man who lives in a neighbouring property said that the family had been living at the home for around 12 years.

"It's very sad, it's a terrible shock. I know him to see but I wouldn't know him that well. He seemed friendly.

"They are a well respected family, the younger lads would be into their cars but there's never been any issues from what I saw," he said.

Irish Independent

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