Man arrested over murder in west Cork in September

John Ustic’s body was found at his rented home in Skibbereen after he was assaulted

A 38-year-old man has been arrested over a fatal assault on a man who was found with serious head injuries in a car park in west Cork in September.

Detectives arrested the man at his home in Thurles, Co Tipperary, at about 9am on Tuesday. He was brought to Bandon Garda station for questioning about the fatal assault on English national John Ustic in Skibbereen on the evening of September 24th.

The man, who was known to Mr Ustic (51), was arrested under section 4 of the Criminal Justice Act which allows gardaí detain suspects for up to 24 hours before they have to be either charged or released. He is the first person to be arrested by gardaí in the investigation.

It is understood gardaí have established that the 38-year-old man was a regular visitor to west Cork where he has relatives, and they believe he travelled to Skibbereen on the weekend Mr Ustic was assaulted.


Fatal injuries

Gardaí are hoping that the man will be able to assist them in establishing how exactly Mr Ustic, a father of one, suffered the fatal injuries in an assault in the car park on High Street, and how he managed to make his way back to the rented house, also on High Street, where he lived with his partner.

Detectives have examined CCTV footage from the street and elsewhere in the Skibbereen area in a bid to establish Mr Ustic’s movements after he left his home on September 24th to buy some drink in Lidl before meeting friends.

Mr Ustic was pronounced dead by paramedics after his partner was unable to rouse him when she found him in the livingroom on the morning of September 25th.


A postmortem by State Pathologist Prof Marie Cassidy at Cork University Hospital confirmed he died from injuries sustained in an assault.

Originally from Cornwall, Mr Ustic had been living in the rented two-storey terraced house on High Street with his partner for several months, having previously lived in Bantry and Drimoleague and in Co Tipperary. He moved to Ireland from the UK about 12 years ago.

Supt Ger O’Mahony of Clonakilty Garda station, who is heading up the investigation, issued a renewed appeal for anyone with information to contact Skibbereen Garda station on 028-23088.

Barry Roche

Barry Roche

Barry Roche is Southern Correspondent of The Irish Times