Gardaí investigate claims Ardee murder suspect confessed in ‘selfie video’

People who knew suspect said they understood he suffered from mental illness bouts

 

A man suspected of killing and dismembering Elizabeth Piotrowska (57) at her home in Ardee, Co Louth, earlier this week was still being questioned by the Garda late on Wednesday night.

However, the 32-year-old suspect was expected to be charged with the killing and to appear before the courts as early as Thursday.

Gardaí are investigating reports the suspect recorded a video of himself after the killing in which he claims the dead woman was “doing black magic”.

He also made further statements, including references to himself as Adolf Hitler, and implies he carried out the murder in what was described as a “selfie video”.

A number of people who knew the suspect said they understood he had suffered from bouts of mental illness.

The dead woman and the suspect were well known to each other and were both from Poland, though living in Ireland for a prolonged period.

Ms Piotrowska, a mother of an adult son and daughter, was found dead in her home on the Clonmore estate in Ardee at about 11.30am on Tuesday.

She had lived in the large semi-detached rented house for a number of years with her husband, who was at work when his wife was fatally attacked and dismembered.

Garda response

The suspect was arrested in the centre of the town early on Tuesday afternoon. He had left the crime scene before one of Ms Piotrowska’s friends arrived at the house to take her out as arranged.

However, when her friend called to the property they made the grim discovery and the alarm was raised.

The house where the victim was killed was sealed off when gardaí arrived on the scene on Tuesday morning.

The victim’s remains were left in situ through the day and overnight into Wednesday morning pending the arrival of Deputy State Pathologist, Dr Michael Curtis.

He carried out a preliminary examination of the body at the scene before Ms Piotrowska’s remains were taken to Our Lady of Lourdes Hospital in Drogheda for a full postmortem.

The house on the Clonmore estate underwent a forensic examination on Wednesday by members of the Garda Technical Bureau.

Gardaí believe the suspect in custody acted alone in killing Ms Piotrowska. They are not looking for anyone else in relation to the case.

As well as the house where the murder took place, gardaí were also examining three other crime scenes.

Further searches

A house where the suspect lived in the centre of Ardee was searched as well as another property in the Cherrybrook area of the town. Gardaí were also examining an area at Drumconrath about 8km outside Ardee.

Detectives believe the suspect took a taxi to that location after the killing and tried to dump evidence there, including blood stained clothing.

The house on Bridge Street and the one in Cherrybrook were scenes of interest rather than crime scenes.

Garda sources said they had been sealed off for searching because the suspect was linked to them.

Ms Piotrowska worked in a car sales business in Co Louth and was described by neighbours as “a lovely woman”.

Her adult daughter lives in Poland while her son has lived for years in Ireland.