Monday 27 January 2020

'It makes no sense at all' - Garda probe after arson attack on elderly woman's home

Stock picture
Stock picture

Conor Kane

Gardai are trying to establish the motive for an attempted arson attack which forced an elderly woman out of her home after somebody tried to set fire to her front door.

The incident happened in the early hours of Tuesday morning, when a person poured an accelerant on the front door of a house on Heywood Road in Clonmel. A woman in her mid-80s, living alone, was in bed at the time inside the house.

It’s understood a motorist who was passing at the time noticed some charring on the door alerted the woman to what had happened. The motorist also called gardai to the scene.

“This poor woman was living alone and could have been dead in her bed with the smoke,” a garda said.

The fire did not take off and the fire service did not have to attend the house. The South Tipperary fire service’s headquarters is located on the same road as the woman’s home, about half a kilometre from O’Connell Street in the centre of Clonmel.

“It makes no sense at all,” the garda said in relation to a motive for the incident. Clonmel gardai are appealing for information on the attempted arson from anyone who was in the Heywood Road area between about 11pm on Monday night and 1am on Tuesday morning. The crime was reported at about 12.30am.

They also want anyone who noticed any suspicious behaviour from a family member or friend, or a smell of petrol from clothing, to contact the garda station.

It’s understood that the woman’s daughter came to the house and brought her away from the scene. Gardai conducted a forensic examination throughout Tuesday but it’s not known yet if the shocked occupant has been able to return.

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