Gardaí release man held for questioning over killing of Ashling Murphy

The Lord Mayor of Cork, in conjunction with the Deputy Lord Mayor and chair of Cork City Council’s Women’s Caucus, will today open an online book of condolence for the late Ashling Murphy.
Gardaí release man held for questioning over killing of Ashling Murphy

Floral tributes at a vigil attended by hundreds in Galway city centre for Ashling Murphy, a young woman who was killed in Tullamore, Co Offaly.Picture:  Roisin Nic Lochlainn

Gardaí have released a man held for questioning in connection with the killing of Ashling Murphy.

The man has been "eliminated" from Garda investigations, gardaí said late on Thursday night, and he is no longer considered a suspect in the case.

A murder investigation is underway following the killing of the 23-year-old teacher as she jogged along a canal in Tullamore.

"The male who was arrested and detained by An Garda Síochána investigating this fatal assault has now been released from this detention," a Garda statement said.

“This male has been eliminated from Garda enquiries and is no longer a suspect.” Gardaí are continuing to appeal for fresh witnesses and for anyone with information on a Falcon Storm mountain bike with “straight handlebars and distinctive yellow/green front forks” to come forward.

Horror

THE director of the Sexual Violence Centre Cork has spoken of her horror at the brutal killing of 23-year-old primary school teacher Ashling Murphy.

Taoiseach Micheál Martin described the killing of the young teacher as a “devastating blow to her family and community”.
Taoiseach Micheál Martin described the killing of the young teacher as a “devastating blow to her family and community”.

Ms Murphy had been out for a run by the Grand Canal at Cappincur, just outside of Tullamore, Co Offaly, when she was fatally attacked at approximately 4pm on Wednesday afternoon, while it was still daylight.

A 40-year-old man was arrested and was last night being detained at Tullamore Garda Station.

Mary Crilly, who is the director of the Sexual Violence Centre Cork, said her thoughts were with Ms Murphy’s family and friends, and her pupils.

“I just think it’s heartbreaking,” Ms Crilly said.

“I wish, in a sense, there was a checklist where you could offer women, and say ‘You do A,B,C,D, and you’ll be safe, but that isn’t the case.

“I think every woman is aware of her surroundings, every woman tries to be careful, every woman tries to protect herself and be safe — as this woman did — but it doesn’t change anything.

“It didn’t stop Ashling being killed,” she said.

Yesterday evening, Taoiseach Micheál Martin described the killing of the young teacher as a “devastating blow to her family and community”.

In a statement, he said: “The entire country is devastated and shocked by the violent and barbaric killing of Ashling Murphy, a young woman in the prime of her life.

“Our thoughts and prayers are with her parents, family, friends, club and community.”

No place in society for violence 

The Taoiseach said there is “no place in our society for violence, particularly violence against women” and, “it cannot and will not be tolerated. The safety and security of women is at the core of our society’s values.”

The Lord Mayor of Cork, in conjunction with the Deputy Lord Mayor and chair of Cork City Council’s Women’s Caucus, will today open an online book of condolence for the late Ashling Murphy.

The Lord Mayor Colm Kelleher, said that the untimely death of Ashling is “utterly tragic” and extended his condolences to all who knew her.

“Your heart would absolutely go out to her family, her friends, her pupils, and the community.

“As Lord Mayor, on behalf of the people of Cork, I will open a book of condolences jointly with the Deputy Lord Mayor, councillor Mary Rose Desmond, chair of Cork City Council’s Women’s Caucus, as a sign of solidarity to the people of Tullamore in Offaly and also to Ashling’s family.”

Ms Desmond also expressed her sympathies to Ashling’s family, her friends, her students and the people of Tullamore.

She described the killing of Ashling as a “horrific crime against humanity”.

“She was a young woman at the start of her life, with opportunities and her career. The world should have been her oyster.

“It’s awful. It really is very, very sad.”

Mayor of the County of Cork, Gillian Coughlan said she was “truly shocked by such an act of violence and can only imagine the sense of loss that is currently being experienced across the community in Tullamore and Co Offaly. “

“My thoughts are with everyone who knew and loved Ashling.”

Vigil

The National Women’s Council of Ireland will hold a candlelit vigil from 4pm today outside Leinster House, in Dublin.

In Cork, a walk is scheduled in memory of Ashling Murphy this Saturday at 9.30am at the Atlantic Pond, on the Páirc Uí Chaoimh side, while at 2pm, Rosa Cork will hold a standout outside Brown Thomas on Patrick Street.

Last night, gardaí investigating the killing of Ashling Murphy, issued a fresh appeal for information.

They asked anyone with information about a “Falcon Storm mountain bike” with “straight handlebars and distinctive yellow/ green front forks” to come forward.

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