New investigation into presumed suicide


A GARDA investigation into the death of Kate Fitzgerald has been reopened, according to her father Tom.

Ms Fitzgerald, who worked for the Communications Clinic public relations firm, was found dead at her Dublin home in August of last year. She was believed to have taken her own life.

Her death became the source of media attention after she was identified as the author of an anonymous article in The Irish Times on September 9th last year about her efforts to deal with depression and workplace attitudes to mental health. Her parents contacted the newspaper after recognising their daughter’s words, and an article on her life was published last November.

Writing in yesterday’s Sunday Independent Tom Fitzgerald said that on February 16th this year the family received Kate’s autopsy report “which didn’t seem consistent with what we had learned previously” and established facts which were “a strong indicator of murder”.

The autopsy found, he said, that she “did not die of a broken neck” as previously thought but “died slowly of ligature strangulation”.

She had not stopped taking her medication, as previously thought, nor had she been drinking heavily, as believed. One broken bone in her neck was “extremely rare in suicidal hanging and even more so with a young person.”

Mr Fitzgerald went to the Garda ombudsman with the autopsy report. “After some persuasion [the ombudsman] agreed that the investigation must be reopened . . . a team of detectives reopened the investigation on May 4th,” he wrote. He asked anyone with relevant information to contact Det Supt Gabriel O’Gara at Pearse Street Garda station in Dublin (01-6669000).