Sinead O’Connor ‘found safe’ after going missing in Chicago

Alarm raised after singer failed to return from bike ride in Wilmette suburb of city

Sinead O’Connor  on stage at the Roundhouse, London, UK, in August  2014. File photograph: Christie Goodwin/Redferns via Getty Images

Sinead O’Connor on stage at the Roundhouse, London, UK, in August 2014. File photograph: Christie Goodwin/Redferns via Getty Images

 

Police in the Chicago suburb of Wilmette have located singer Sinead O’Connor.

A police spokesman said: “She was found safe and is no longer listed as missing or in danger.”

Earlier, they said they are “seeking to check the well-being” of the singer who they said had been missing since early on Sunday.

O’Connor (49), reportedly left the Wilmette area for a bicycle ride at 6.00am local time on Sunday and has not returned, the police said in a statement.

A caller expressed concern for her well-being.

Wilmette Police Chief Brian King said O’Connor was last seen riding a Raleigh motorised bicycle with a pink basket, and that she was last seen wearing a black parka, black leather pants and a sweatshirt with “Ireland” on the back.

Last November, the singer received medical treatment after a message about her taking a drug overdose was posted on her Facebook page.

The Chicago Tribune quoted an unnamed source as saying O’Connor has been living in Wilmette since at February. She performed in a David Bowie concert in the Chicago area on March 4th.

Earlier this month, comedian Arsenio Hall filed a $5 million defamation lawsuit against O’Connor for comments she made on Facebook about him and rock star Prince, whose death on April 21st prompted speculation about an overdose.

O’Connor’s biggest hit was her 1990 version of the Prince song Nothing Compares 2 U.

In November, she posted a message on Facebook saying she had taken an overdose at a hotel somewhere in Ireland. Gardaí later said she had been found safe.

The following month, O’Connor posted on Facebook that she had been detained in a hospital for mental health evaluation.

Her rendition of Nothing Compares 2 U topped charts from Europe to Australia, and earned O’Connor multiple Grammy Award nominations.

In 1991, O’Connor was named artist of the year by Rolling Stone. But her blunt-spoken manner often drew criticism, especially in the United States. In 1990, some US radio stations refused to play her music after she banned the Star-Spangled Banner from her show in New Jersey.

An outspoken critic of the Catholic Church over the way it handled sexual abuse by clergy, she drew intense criticism in 1992 when she ripped up a picture of Pope John Paul II on Saturday Night Live.

Over the years O’Connor has voiced support for other young female performers facing intense public scrutiny, including Britney Spears and Miley Cyrus.

O’Connor, who was diagnosed with bipolar disorder more than a decade ago, has spoken of her mental health problems. She told Oprah Winfrey in 2007 that before her diagnosis she had struggled with thoughts of suicide and overwhelming fear.

She said at the time that medication had helped her find more balance, but “it’s a work in progress”.

In 2012, O’Connor cancelled a planned tour, saying her doctor had told her to rest after a “very serious breakdown”. O’Connor, who has been married four times and has four children, signed a deal in 2014 to write a memoir.