Saturday 17 March 2018

Labourer who shot his boss previously saved him

Joanne Sweeney

A FARM labourer who ended the life of his employer had previously come to his aid when he had suffered a heart attack.

The news that Michael Murphy (37) helped farmer Arthur Gibson at a time of crisis came as it was reported that the Co Antrim farmhouse where the tragedy took place had since been burgled.

Police said the burglary occurred some time between 3pm on Sunday and 7.30am on yesterday.

It is believed raiders struck at the farmhouse knowing that it would be an easy target following the two deaths on Friday.

It is understood that the father of four shot Mr Gibson (61) last Friday afternoon in the kitchen at the dairy farm in Glenarm before killing himself with a shotgun.


It is still unknown whether the shooting of Mr Gibson was a deliberate act or whether it was accidental .

Mr Murphy, whose partner is pregnant, was known to have received hospital treatment for depression and had battled drug dependency.

He had worked for around 15 years on the Gibson farm, forging a strong friendship with the 61-year-old farmer.

When Mr Gibson suffered a heart attack several years ago, it was Mr Murphy who brought him to hospital.

Neighbouring farmer John McAuley said: "It just beggars belief that this could have happened.

"My daughter said that Michael Murphy called into our shop just around lunchtime and seemed to be his normal self."

Irish Independent

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