Gardaí rule out link between suitcases and missing woman

Tina Satchwell has been missing from Cork since March 2017

Richard Satchwell holding a photo of his missing wife Tina at their home in Youghal, Co Cork. Photograph: Irish Examiner

Richard Satchwell holding a photo of his missing wife Tina at their home in Youghal, Co Cork. Photograph: Irish Examiner

 

Gardaí investigating the case of a woman missing from her home in Co Cork for almost a year have ruled out any link between her disappearance and the discovery of two suitcases near her home four months later.

Tina Satchwell (45) was reported missing from her home on Grattan Street in Youghal on March 24th last by her husband Richard Satchwell, who told gardaí she was last seen four days earlier.

Gardaí were unable to find any trace of Ms Satchwell but their investigation took an unexpected twist on July 9th when Mr Satchwell contacted them to say he had found two suitcases which looked like ones belonging to his wife at a clothes bank in the Tesco carpark in Youghal.

Laboratory

The suitcases were recovered by gardaí and sent to the Forensic Science Ireland laboratory for examination. Following DNA analysis detectives are now satisfied that they did not belong to Ms Satchwell and are not linked to her or her disappearance.

Garda technical experts carried out a forensic examination of the couple’s three-storey home and the couple’s car in early June but there was nothing suspicious found

The news comes as as RTÉ Prime Time prepares to feature the story on Thursday night with reporter Barry Cummins having carried out a number of interviews with Mr Satchwell’s about his wife’s disappearance.

Tina Satchwell on Christmas Day 2016 with her Chihuahua Ruby. Photograph: Irish Examiner
Tina Satchwell on Christmas Day 2016 with her Chihuahua Ruby. Photograph: Irish Examiner

Mr Satchwell, who is from England, met his wife, then Tina Dingivan, when she moved to Leicester in the UK in the late 1980s. They later moved back to her native Fermoy and the programme features an interview with him at Mount Pleasant near Youghal Harbour where Mr Satchwell proposed to her in 1989.

Mr Satchwell also told Prime Time that he discovered his wife had left their home on March 20th after he returned home from a shopping trip to Dungarvan, Co Waterford. He says that he thought and still thinks she left to “get her head straight” as she was prone to mood swings and “getting down in herself”.

Cash missing

He says he thought Ms Satchwell might be upstairs on a sunbed as her keys and mobile phone were in the house when he arrived home but he then noticed her suitcases were missing and that a cash box was open and more than €26,000 in cash from the sale of their previous home was missing.

Mr Satchwell also says that he believes his wife planned to leave and that it was not some spontaneous decision on the day. He believes that someone facilitated her departure, that she is still alive and could come back as suddenly as she left.

Garda technical experts carried out a forensic examination of the couple’s three-storey home and the couple’s car in early June but there was nothing suspicious found to suggest that Ms Satchwell had been the victim of foul play.

Investigators have also examined CCTV cameras from around Youghal but could find no footage showing Ms Satchwell. A review CCTV footage from Bus Éireann services from the town also yielded nothing.