herald

Wednesday 23 August 2017

Partner of tragic mum Rita is re-arrested and charged with murder

Murder victim Rita Apine with her partner Renars Veigulis
Murder victim Rita Apine with her partner Renars Veigulis

A 31-year-old man has been charged with killing his partner at their home in Co Kilkenny.

Latvian national Renars Veigulis, of Bridge Street, Freshford, appeared before a special sitting of Kilkenny District Court yesterday morning when he was charged with the murder of Rita Apine (29).

The mother-of-one was discovered with serious injuries at her home in Bridge Street last Sunday.

Caution

Ms Apine, who was also Latvian, was transferred to St Luke's Hospital but was later pronounced dead.

At yesterday's court hearing, Det Sgt Sean O'Meara gave evidence of arrest, charge and caution.

He said he arrested Mr Veigulis on Saturday evening and that he replied "no" when the charges were put to him.

Mr Veigulis was originally arrested on the afternoon of Ms Apine's death but released without charge last Monday before being re-arrested on Friday evening.

He was taken in an unmarked garda car to the courthouse in Kilkenny yesterday morning, accompanied by a number of marked patrol cars.

Tony Collier, defending, said that due to the seriousness of the charge a bail application could not be made at district court level.

An application was also made for legal aid. "He is not in a position to work, so there is a case for legal aid," Mr Collier said.

Legal aid was granted by Judge Colin Daly, and he remanded Mr Veigulis to appear before Cloverhill District Court on Friday.

Ms Apine and her daughter moved into the private rented house in Freshford late last year, having initially sought hous- ing from Kilkenny County Council.

They had previously lived at St Teresa's Terrace in the city.

Shocked

Locals in the quiet area of Bridge Street spoke of their shock following the killing.

A neighbour of Ms Apine, who did not want to give her name, said: "The mother had a little girl and you would often see them walking around the town.

"I'm honestly so shocked and saddened by it all.

"To have something like this happen here is really very tragic."

Ms Apine was not working but was hoping to learn to drive later this year and seek work when her daughter started pre-school.

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