herald

Friday 24 May 2019

Watch may be vital clue to body found in house after years

A BODY found in a derelict city house lay undiscovered for four years.

Gardai now hope that a watch may hold the key to identifying the mummified remains of the unknown man.

Tragically, investigators believe that the corpse had been rotting inside the property just off the busy North Circular Road in Phibsboro since 2009.

"Nobody in this city likes to hear about terrible tragedies like this one. It's very upsetting," local councillor Christy Burke told the Herald.

Gardai are working on the theory that the man may have been a drug addict or homeless and entered the boarded up bungalow at Royal Canal Bank West seeking shelter.

A post mortem carried out at the Mater Hospital has ruled out foul play.

The remains are described as being of a thinly built man who was between 5ft and 5ft 5ins.

He was wearing size six navy boots, navy or black combat-style pants and a green striped jumper. But most significantly he was wearing a distinct Pulsar watch which officers hope may help lead them to an identity.

"Gardai are checking through missing persons reports and examining dental records in an effort to establish the identity of the deceased," a source said.

"The age of the deceased is not known. Gardai believe that the body may have been there since 2009. He was also wearing a Pulsar watch."

The body was found in a curled up position in an alcove with a set of drawers pulled in front of it.

"This would suggested that the man went in there trying to keep warm," explained a source.

The house is an appalling condition with rubbish scattered in most rooms and syringes and other drug paraphernalia clearly visible. All the windows are broken or removed and the internal doors are smashed.

Independent TD for the area, Maureen O'Sullivan, said she hopes the authorities "get to the bottom" of how the man came to be in the house.

"People are referring to a corpse, but this is also a person. It's somebody's son or brother and it is very, very sad," she told the Herald.

And Cllr Burke called on the City Council to address the issue of derelict properties in the city.

"On a human element, for a person's remains to lie undiscovered for years in our city is truly sad. He could have been there for months or even many years.

"These tragedies rear their ugly heads because of the issue of derelict sites. It's something that needs to be addressed."

kfoy@herald.ie

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