Gardaí believe walking couple are key to solving horrific attack on woman
A couple who were walking in the area at the time a woman was viciously assaulted and left for dead could have key information to help crack the case, gardaí believe.
A Garda manhunt is continuing after the victim, in her 50s, was attacked on the grounds of Pollerton Castle in Carlow town.
The serious assault occurred about 4am on Sunday as the woman was returning to her nearby home.
Gardaí believe she was subjected to a "very violent" attack.
Shockingly, the unconscious woman was not discovered until around nine hours after the assault took place.
The victim was immediately rushed to St Luke's Hospital, Co Kilkenny, where she remains in a serious condition.
Gardaí have not disclosed the nature of her injuries for operational reasons.
But last night they renewed their appeal for information and said they were "particularly anxious to speak to a male and female couple" who were walking in the area around the time of the attack.
- Read more: Gardai 'anxious' to speak with couple after woman (50s) found with serious injuries on grounds of castle
Detectives have established that the woman was in contact with her daughter at 2.30am and was close to her home when she was attacked. At this stage they have not been able to interview the victim and have yet to establish a clear motive for the attack.
A senior source said: "This was a very serious assault and gardaí are desperate for help.
"This woman had no known enemies and there was no known threat to her."
The man who discovered the unconscious woman told the Irish independent that he was still in shock.
"I was told not to comment on what I had seen, but I just hope that this woman is OK.
"We're all very shocked here," he said.
Superintendent Gerry Redmond said gardaí were especially keen to speak to taxi drivers, delivery workers or anyone who may have been travelling in the area with dash-cams to contact them in Carlow.
He said they were focused on the Pollerton Road, Staplestown Road and St Patrick's Avenue area of the town.
It is understood gardaí are also trawling through CCTV in a bid to track down the woman's attacker.
Local councillor Jim Deane said he hoped gardaí would be able to track down the attacker following the distressing incident.