Tuesday 23 January 2018

Suspicious death probe after body discovered in house

A garda outside the house in Kilkenny city where the dead man was found.
A garda outside the house in Kilkenny city where the dead man was found.

Nicola Anderson, Paul Williams and Conor Kane

GARDAI are still trying to trace the last movements of a man whose bruised body was found after he spent a day drinking.

The death of Anthony Barrett, aged in his early 40s and living on Parliament Street in Kilkenny city, is being treated as suspicious, with sources saying it is feared he died as a result of strangulation.

Originally from Castlecomer, he was found with bruising to the upper body at about 7pm on Thursday in a house at Fatima Place in Kilkenny city.

Gardai have not released the post-mortem results on Mr Barrett's body for "operational reasons," but it's understood there were no head injuries or stab wounds.

Dr Khalid Jabber conducted the post-mortem at Waterford Regional Hospital and "wasn't happy" that the man could have died from natural causes, according to gardai.

While the dead man may have suffered a fall at the house, gardai believe the death may be suspicious.

"In those situations, you could fall and we just want to rule anything out that didn't cause it, before we decide where we're going," a garda involved in the investigation said.

"There are a lot of potential causes for how someone could have been deceased like that."

And as a distraught elderly mother struggled to come to terms with the loss of her only child in disturbing circumstances, the close-knit community of Castlecomer rallied around to provide support.

Not much had been known of Mr Barrett in his native town in recent years.

He had travelled extensively, living in Denmark, England and Holland before arriving in Kilkenny city.

Detectives are trying to establish the movements of Mr Barrett, who was drinking around Kilkenny from Wednesday evening and during Thursday before returning to the house at Fatima Place.

They are talking to customers and staff at Campion's Pub on Blackmill Street in Kilkenny, where Mr Barrett spent some time on Wednesday or Thursday, and also trying to speak to staff at local betting shops .

The alarm was raised by the another resident in the house at about 6.30pm.

Ambulance personnel attempted to revive the injured man but those efforts proved unsuccessful and he was pronounced dead shortly afterwards at the scene.

"He was drinking fairly heavily, throughout the day, for about 24 hours and went down to the house and had more drink," the garda said.

Anyone with information has been asked to contact the incident room at Kilkenny garda station on 0567775000 or the garda confidential line on 1800666111.

Irish Independent

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