'They should be enjoying retirement': Community's shock as man (94) attacked and wife threatened during break-in
Raiders who left an elderly man (94) hospitalised after they attacked him in front of his wife are "thugs", a local councillor said.
Fianna Fail's Michael Smith said the community in Roscrea in Co Tipperary is "in shock and disbelief" after the pensioner suffered head injuries when two people broke into his home last night.
The man and his wife (87) were threatened during the ordeal, he was was assaulted but she was not injured during the incident.
The raiders left with a small amount of cash and the emergency services were contacted at around 11.40pm.
Speaking on RTE Radio One, Cllr Smith extended his sympathies to the victim and his wife - who witnessed the incident - and their familly.
He said: "In the town of Roscrea there's a real sense of shock and disbelief, it's terrible to hear about an elderly couple being viciously attacked in their own home.
"I'd like to wish them all the best with their recovery.
"This man was very well-known and respected in Roscrea, he worked hard in a factory for years and at a time when him and his wife should be enjoying their retirement they were subjected to this nightmare attack...
"It's a quiet part of the town, well-established and not somewhere where you would have seen anything like this before.
"The majority of families who live there have lived there for a number of years.
"All we can describe whoever done this as thugs to attack an elderly couple."
Mr Smith also urged anyone with any information to contact the Gardai.
He said: "It's truly horrific and I would appeal to anyone who was in the area last night who might have any information to contact Gardai.
"The details are quite scant but we know that two men entered their home late last night and unfortunately Jimmy is in hospital in Portlaoise at the moment and our thoughts and prayers are with him and his family.
"I believe he's doing well, I was talking to one of his family and it seems like such a difficult attack that an elderly couple were faced with this.
"He's recovering and that's the most important thing for us."
The man was taken by ambulance to the Midlands Regional Hospital in Portlaoise where he is being treated for head injuries.
Anyone with information should contact Roscrea Garda Station on 0505 24230.