Paddy Lyons was tied up by burglar, gardaí say

Man in his 20s arrested in connection with the killing of 90-year-old in Ballysaggart

Gardaí search for evidence at Paddy Lyons’s home at Ballysaggart, near Lismore. Photograph: Michael Mac Sweeeney/Provision

Gardaí search for evidence at Paddy Lyons’s home at Ballysaggart, near Lismore. Photograph: Michael Mac Sweeeney/Provision

 

Gardaí believe a 90-year-old found dead in his isolated farmhouse had been targeted by a burglar who tied him up and robbed him 24 hours earlier.

Detectives believe Paddy Lyons was targeted after the burglar learned from a woman who used to visit the elderly bachelor on a regular basis that he kept cash in the house in Ballysaggart near Lismore, Co Waterford.

It is understood Mr Lyons received injuries during the ordeal on Friday evening.

When a couple who also used to visit him called on Saturday at about 4.30pm and discovered him slumped in a chair, they called to a neighbour and asked her to raise the alarm.

The neighbour, who was also Mr Lyons’s home help, went to his house and alerted the emergency services but he was pronounced dead at the scene and gardaí requested the services of the State Pathologist’s Office.

Appeal for assistance

Dungarvan

Supt Mick Leacy of Dungarvan Garda station had earlier issued an appeal for assistance and the couple who raised the alarm on Saturday contacted gardaí at the incident room at Dungarvan Garda station.

Gardaí believe that Mr Lyons was targeted rather than the victim of a random robbery as his single story cottage was located 500m down a muddy track and, shielded by fir trees, was not visible from the road.

It is understood gardaí believe that Mr Lyons was robbed on Friday evening as he always lit a fire and had one lighting when he was last seen alive at home at about 4.30pm on Friday, but there was no evidence that he lit a fire on Saturday.

Murder inquiry

Margaret Bolster

He would not give details on how Mr Lyons died.

Supt Leacy similarly refused to be drawn on whether there were any signs of a break-in at the house but he did reveal Mr Lyons had a number of regular visitors and he appealed to “anyone who would call to his house on a regular basis to contact us”.

Gardaí carried out door-to-door inquiries in Ballysaggart and also began examining CCTV footage in the village.

Supt Leacy confirmed at the press briefing that Mr Lyons had been the victim of a burglary in 2011 when he returned home to discover thieves had broken in but he refused to be drawn on whether there was money missing from the house following the latest burglary.