Saturday 20 July 2019

'Mary Lowry had his head melted' - Senior garda quizzed over notes in missing persons investigation

Mary Lowry. Photo: Tony Gavin
Mary Lowry. Photo: Tony Gavin
Mary Lowry outside court. Photo: Collins Courts
Murder victim Bobby Ryan; his body was found in a slurry tank when it was drained in April 2013 at Mary Lowry’s farm.
A slurry tank is drained at Mary Lowry s farm outside Tipperary town.
Pat Quirke. Photo: Collins
Nicola Anderson

Nicola Anderson

A SENIOR Garda has told how he could not recall who had said "Mary Lowry had his head melted" - a comment which appeared in his notes of what was at the time, a missing persons investigation.

Chief Superintendent Dominic Hayes told the Tipperary murder trial that the line had emerged in a garda conference following the disappearance of Bobby Ryan.

Taken through his notes by Lorcan Staines SC for the Defence, he explained that he had taken down the line but did not recall where it had come from. He explained that he had happened to be in Tipperary because there were two murder investigations ongoing and that he would not normally be in a missing persons conference.

Patrick Quirke (50) of Breanshamore, Co Tipperary has pleaded not guilty to the murder of Bobby Ryan (52), a part time DJ known as Mr Moonlight on a date between June 3 2011 and April 2013.

Chief Supt Hayes was asked about the final time that Mr Ryan's phone had 'pinged' off a mast. This had been at 10.19 am on June 3 2011, at Crough Motors on the Cashel Road.

He explained that just because the phone pings off the mast doesn't mean that the person was there. He said that the mast was 'close enough to Fawnagowan, across the fields.'

He was also asked about a note which read "clothing, jewellery, keys," with Mr Staines asking if this did not suggest he was taking notes that these items were missing.

The Chief Supt said no, that these notes were made on April 30 2013 and that the post mortem had not been conducted at this stage. He said he had been under the impression that the body was clothed at this point.

The following day, he became aware that Mr Ryan's remains had been naked when discovered, he said.

He was also asked about a line reading "height-bumper" and asked why he was interested in this.

He said vehicles available in the yard had been examined but he said he was not sure if it was a tractor or a van and could not put it any further.

The trial continues.

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