Authority investigates death of elderly man

 

DUBLIN Corporation has begun an inquiry into the circumstances surrounding the death of an elderly man whose body may have gone undiscovered for up to two weeks in one of its retirement complexes.

Neighbours found Mr James Clarke (74), in his flat at Clareville Court, Glasnevin, on Monday night.

He appeared to have a head wound although there were no signs of a break-in and nothing was taken from the flat. A post mortem was carried out yesterday and it is suspected he may have died of a heart attack.

The corporation inquiry will try to establish when Mr Clarke was last seen and why his body went undiscovered for so long.

One of more than 50 senior citizen developments run under the local authority's housing and community department, the complex is supervised by a community warden who regularly checks on residents.

Some said the warden had been ill recently and there had been no temporary replacement.

Because no one had keys to Mr Clarke's home, neighbours had to climb over a dividing balcony wall to gain access to his flat.

A spokeswoman for Dublin Corporation declined to say whether the warden was absent due to illness, adding that the inquiry would establish the facts.

Neighbours said it was not rare for residents to go unseen for so long. They lived independently and were often away. Each unit in the 43-flat complex is fitted with emergency pull cords which give residents 24-hour access to hospital and Garda services.