OVER 30 gardai are involved in the investigation of a vicious assault on three pensioners during an aggravated burglary in Pallasgreen last week.
During an application to extend the detention period of a man arrested on Wednesday, Chief Supt David Sheahan outlined to a special sitting of Limerick District Courtlast night the “diligent and expeditious fashion” in which gardai investigating the crime.
Judge Eamon O’Brien granted gardai a further 72 hours to hold the man at Bruff garda station.
State solicitor, Michael Murray, said the application was being made under Section 50 of the Criminal Justice Act by Chief Supt Sheahan.
“The offence happened the previous night [Thursday, May 31]. It came to our attention at 12.30am on Friday morning when Thomas Creed reported an incident had occurred at a residence. Gardai from Pallasgreen, Murroe and Cappamore attended the scene and found an aggravated burglary had occurred,” said Chief Supt Sheahan.
It is believed that up to three men were involved in the incident and that two of them were armed with a knife and and a spear knife.
“Two culprits attacked Willie Creed and demanded money. His two sisters, Nora and Chrissie, were beaten. The house was ransacked while they continuously assaulted the parties. They were tied with cable ties and locked in a bedroom,” said Chief Supt Sheahan.
The court heard that the incident lasted 90 to 120 minutes.
The chief superintendent said the three injured siblings were taken to the Regional Hospital afterwards.
“Willie Creed received severe wounds to his head and a cut to his arm. Nora and Chrissie were beaten to the head and body,” he said.
Gardai immediately launched an investigation led by Det Insp, Tom O’Connor.
Chief Supt Sheahan said Det Garda Mike Reidy arrested a man in Monard on Wednesday morning in connection with the aggravated burglary.
He was brought to Bruff garda station and the court heard that, up to the last evening, the man had been interviewed on nine occasions totalling 14 hours and 43 minutes by three interview teams.
Chief Supt Sheahan applied for the application to extend the detention of the suspect on seven grounds.
He said searches are continuing at a number of locations and that CCTV footage is still being viewed by the investigation team. The court was told that house to house enquiries are also continung and that the results of forensic tests on a number of items are awaited.
Solicitor John Cooke, representing the 27-year-old suspect, opposed the application on behalf of his client, who also gave evidence to the court.
Judge Eamon O’Brien said having “considered the evidence he was satisfied in granting a further 72 hours”.