Gardaí investigate if Balbriggan murder victim was target of robbery

Christopher Hall’s death has left locals feeling ‘vulnerable’, says councillor

Robbery has emerged as the main suspected motive for the murder of a “vulnerable” man in north Dublin earlier this week.

Christopher Hall (65) was found dead by one of his two daughters in his home in Balbriggan on Wednesday afternoon. He had suffered serious injuries to the upper body and head which appeared to have been caused by a blunt instrument.

No weapon was found at the scene and there were no signs of forced entry. Gardaí are continuing to keep an open mind as to the circumstances of the death but they believe Mr Hall may have let his assailant into the house, possibly on Tuesday evening.

There were no obvious signs of robbery but one line of inquiry is that Mr Hall was targeted over the proceeds of a recent win he had in the bookmakers. He was a regular customer of the local Boylesports.


He was described by gardaí as a medically vulnerable person due to an acquired brain injury from a fall some years ago.

His murder has left locals in the community, particularly older people, worried for their safety, independent local councillor Tony Murphy said.

“When you’ve someone who is old and living on their own, it creates a sense of vulnerability for others that may also be living on their own. People are shocked, as they would be anywhere.”

He described Mr Hall, who lived alone, as a very quiet, “anonymous” man who would often be seen on his own in the village.

A senior investigating officer has been appointed to lead the murder inquiry and an incident room has been established at Balbriggan Garda station. A postmortem was carried out on Thursday night.

"An Garda Síochána will continue to work closely with the community in the Dun Saithne area over the coming days as they come to terms with the violent death of their friend and neighbour Christopher," Balbriggan Superintendent Paul Franey said as he appealed for witnesses to come forward.

"I am appealing to any person who was in the Dun Saithne Green, Dun Saithne Crescent or wider Dun Saithne area between 8pm on Tuesday and 2pm Wednesday, whether you believe you saw anything of interest or not, to contact Balbriggan Garda station."

Conor Gallagher

Conor Gallagher

Conor Gallagher is Crime and Security Correspondent of The Irish Times