Police leading the enquiry into the suspected murder of a resident at a nursing home in Randalstown have insisted that they have not been dragging their feet. Last week, officers confirmed that they were treating the death of 56-year-old Seamus McCollum as murder - almost six months after the Belfast man died at Maine Nursing Home. Since then an investigation into the former Muckamore Abbey resident's sudden death has gathered pace, and detectives have questioned many of the staff and visitors to the privately owned home for people with learning disabilities. The PSNI has stressed, however, that they are not following a specific line of enquiry 'at this stage.’
(Source: Antrim Guardian)


A young mother living alone with her four- year-old son was left shocked and traumatized recently after an audacious thief sauntered into her Newry home in the early hours of the morning. The Chequer Court resident told The Examiner how she had emerged from an upstairs room after speaking with her mother on the phone, only to find the intruder at the top of the stairs, adjacent to her sleeping child’s bedroom.

Terrified but protective of her young son, the woman demanded to know what he was doing in her home. When the intruder claimed that he had mistakenly entered the property believing it to be the home of a couple he knew, the frightened mother frantically rang police, who arrived as the man was still trying to make his getaway.


A Carlow company has established a Hollywood following after its latest product stormed the American markets. Local manufacturer Oglesby and Butler is making waves among celebrities and TV executives with its line of gas-powered tobacco vaporizers, specifically their Iolite and WISPR products. The compact tobacco burners have been described as a cleaner way to smoke and are proving a hit stateside. The burners are set to appear in an upcoming comedy show and have already been featured on the HBO series, Bored to Death.
(Source: The Carlow Nationalist)


While Cavan has often recorded the largest jump in Traveler numbers for any county in the country, the latest census figures don't reveal any changing attitudes towards Travelers in the community itself. "What is significant is that Travelers are now more willing to self-identify,” says Bernard Joyce, the county's regional community development officer for the Irish Traveler Movement. Nevertheless, despite the Travelers’ enthusiasm for self-identification, the greater Cavan community seems reluctant to reevaluate its opinions of the minority.
(Source: The Anglo Celt)


Kilkee Chamber of Commerce secretary Paul Williams has expressed shock at Clare County Council’s instructions that the chamber not collect rubbish strewn around the resort last Easter weekend. The directive, based on health and safety concerns, was issued despite the fact the chamber claims that the council provided no cleaning service in the resort town for the duration of the Easter Bank Holiday weekend.
(Source: The Clare Champion)


Though it might seem like a late April's Fool joke, studies by Cork scientists show that protein for the brain can be found in a baby's nappy. Dr Catherine Stanton and Dr Rebecca Wall, of the Alimentary Pharmabiotic Centre in Teagasc Moorepark Food Research center in Fermoy, have discovered after several years of research that there is protein in the contents of a baby's nappy that improves the function of the brain. This new research has just been published in the prestigious American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. The designer probiotic bacteria have had significant effect on the brain fatty acids of mice, while also providing the potential to improve brain function when mixed up in yoghurt or in a drink.(Source: Cork Independent)


Police in Derry are launching an operation aimed at cracking down on the sale of alcohol to children. A number of planned test purchases at alcohol vendors will be conducted in the city over the coming months.
(Source: Derry Journal)


Scores of Donegal’s undocumented in the United States have expressed “disappointment and anger” at the failure of Donegal County Council to send representatives to the recent St. Patrick’s Day celebrations. Highlighting the reactions of both the undocumented and the Donegal Associations in New York and Philadelphia, Letterkenny Town councilor Jimmy Kavanagh, who represented the local authority at the events, said he has been told “loud and clear” that the County Council should have been present.

“The view on this is very different in America than it is here. We might talk about not being able to afford to send delegations in the current economic climate but that is dismissed out of hand by the organizers who argue that the time is now to be sending people, and it is now that we should be out trying to galvanize the support of the Irish-American community,” said Kavanagh at last week’s meeting of the Town Council.
(Source: Donegal Democrat)


Police defended a delay of over an hour before officers arrived at the scene of a car bomb alert in Newry, County Down. A hijacked taxi, containing a suspect device, was abandoned close to houses on Martins Lane last Saturday night. Residents used their own cars to block the road and tried to divert traffic themselves as they waited for police. The PSNI said they did not attend immediately for safety reasons and the alert was later declared a hoax.
(Source: Belfast Telegraph)


A man died in a house fire in west Dublin in the early hours of last Thursday morning. It is believed a chip pan was the cause of the blaze. The man, known locally as Seamus Phelan, had been living on his own in the house in Lucan, and was believed to be in his fifties. The alarm was raised at around 1:30 am in the Esker Park estate when neighbors heard an alarm ringing and spotted smoke coming from the windows.
(Source: Evening Herald)


Four people on board a cruiser on Lough Erne were rescued by the RNLI after their boat ran aground. It was the second time in a week that a lifeboat was called out to a stranded boat due to low water levels on the County Fermanagh lake. Previously, on April 6th, a cruiser with three adults and two children on board got stuck in shallow water.
(Source: BBC News)


Fellow members of the Association of Catholic Priests have voiced their solidarity with the Galway priest who has been silenced by the Vatican over his backing for the Taoiseach’s condemnation of the Church’s response to clerical sex abuse in Ireland. Fr. Tony Flannery, who is based in the Redemptorist Monastery in Esker, was silenced following his public support of Taoiseach Enda Kenny’s attack on the Vatican’s handling child sex abuse allegations. The Taoiseach, speaking in the Dáil earlier this year, called on the Catholic Church to apologize.
(Source: Connacht Tribune)


Though the eyes of the world may have been on the US Masters last weekend, the hot topic on everyone's lips last Friday night wasn't how Tiger Woods or Rory McIlroy was faring, but rather: “Who was the fella in the Kerry jersey?”

As Tom Watson finished his round, the camera caught sight of a man at the front of the crowd wearing a Kerry GAA jersey. Though the image was brief, tournament coverage was being beamed live across the world by ESPN, Sky Sports and BBC, prompting social media networks to become alive with chatter as to the identity of the mystery man wearing the Green and Gold. As of now, the name of the Kerry fan remains unknown.
(Source: Irish Times)


Police in Balitore and Castledermot are investigating the possibility of a link between the theft of a car in Ballitore and a break-in at a house in Castledermot. On Tuesday April 3rd at approximately 2:20 am, burglars gained entry to a house in Timolin by forcing open a dining room. The raider, or raiders, found car keys in the house and left the scene in a black X5 series BMW. On the previous night, April 2, raiders had also gained entry to a house at The Friary in Castledermot by forcing open the front door. Investigations are ongoing as to whether the two incidents are linked.
(Source: Kildare Nationalist)


Kilkenny hurler Henry Shefflin will scale new heights at Croke Park this summer when he takes to the roof of the Hogan Stand to carry the Olympic torch. The Ballyhale man has been chosen by the GAA to represent the organization in carrying the Olympic torch as it makes its way to the Opening Ceremonies in London. For once, however, the hurling legend will be on unfamiliar ground at Headquarters, as he will be running not onto the pitch, but across the roof of the fabled Hogan Stand.
(Source: Kilkenny People)


Laois is one of the counties earmarked for the route of the major new electricity pylon project that would link Cork to Dublin. Eirgrid has announced that it is starting a consultation process on the estimated €500 million Grid Link Project to upgrade the electricity grid in the south and east of Ireland. The company says the development will involve the construction of a new power line linking Leinster and Munster, and will involve the building of large scale 400kv pylons along the route.
(Source: Leinster Express)


On April 12, Holy Thursday, a number of Trocaire Irish charity boxes were stolen from the porch of St Patrick’s Church, Ballinamore. V. Rev Charles Heerey told the Leitrim Observer that a number of boxes had been placed into the containers at the front porch of the open church on Main Street. It is not known how many boxes were stolen. Rev Heerey said it was “very sad” that someone could do that, but told the paper that the culprits are known.
(Source: Leitrim Observer)


A six-year-old boy who was killed in a tragic road accident in Murroe last week was named locally as Anthony Fitzgerald. It is understood that the child was playing with a friend near his home in the Ros Fearna housing estate at around 5 pm. While his friend is unhurt, the boy was knocked down when he ran on to the road just outside Murroe village on the Limerick road. The car was being driven by a person from the locality.
(Source: Limerick Leader)


Gardai investigating the seizure of up to €80,000 of cannabis plants from a grow house in Ballinamuck last week believe the hoard may have been destined for the Dublin drug market. Last week, officers swooped on the premises where an estimated 200 plants, in various stages of growth, were seized. A man in his twenties was arrested at the scene and brought to Longford Garda Station under Section 4 of the Criminal Justice Act for questioning, where he was later released.
(Source: Longford Leader)


The Londis Store on Quay Street has been put up for tender by the receiver, Kieran Wallace of KPMG. The store was formerly owned by well-known Dundalk man Peter Dixon, who is recently deceased. Local estate agent Brian Carroll of Sherry Fitzgerald has given a guide price on the store of €775,000, which has been set out as a target price for public tenders.
(Source: Dundalk Democrat)


A Crossmolina man was rushed to Mayo General Hospital after he drank some poitín which was meant for a sick dog. Alan Traynor appeared before the Castlebar District Court after he was arrested for intoxication in a public place and threatening and abusive behavior in the A&E Department of Mayo General Hospital on April 2. Traynor told the court that he drank the illegal alcohol in his home in Crossmolina but could not remember anything after drinking it. Though he was transferred to Mayo General Hospital, the ambulance personnel insisted for safety reasons that they would only bring him in if they were accompanied by four gardaí.
(Source: The Mayo News)


Garda chief Michael Devine has said that only a return to basic "neighborly values" among householders and businesspeople, combined with garda action, can beat the growing plague of burglaries in Meath. According to the latest statistics, burglaries in the area have surged 40 percent between 2010 and 2011. The number of non-aggravated burglaries rose substantially quarter by quarter last year, reaching a total of 1,176 in the county last year. The number of similar burglaries in 2010 was 831.
(Source: Meath Chronicle)


Trade, civic, and community leaders in Castleblayney, Co Monaghan, have expressed shock over the announcement that the Cargill Limited meat processing plant in the town is to shut. The firm had leased the premises since 2002 from Castleblayney Community Enterprise Board, which erected the building as an “advance factory” in 1999 to help create jobs and boost the town’s then flagging economy. However, the English-based company has now cited the loss of substantial markets and orders as the reasons for withdrawing from the Irish market, leading to the loss of 70-plus jobs in the area.
(Source: Irish Times)


Kilisha Glennon is a nine year old girl from Coolstown, Carrick Road, Edenderry. She is a kind, caring and loving little girl who, like any other nine year old, is into music, dancing, hip hop and fashion. Two years ago, her whole life was turned upside when she was diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor on her seventh birthday. Despite having major surgery in Temple Street Children’s Hospital, Kilisha has a long hard road ahead of her and is still attending hospital for more treatments. Nevertheless, in a heartwarming story, the Share a Dream Foundation was able to make brave Kilisha’s dream of becoming a top model come true. Thanks to their incredible efforts, Kilisha was treated like a princess and got to achieve her dream of being a model for a day.
(Source: Offaly Express)


A coroner has ruled a verdict of accidental death after a Co. Roscommon born grandmother was hit by a motorbike in Sale, England. An inquest was told how Nora Higgins, who lived in England for many years, decided to make the most of the sunshine and walk to her Sale Moor home following a party at her church. Stockport Coroner’s Court heard that the 88-year-old, of Oulton Avenue, left Sale Moor’s Holy Family Church at 5.20pm on July 23 last year and was hit by a motorcycle when she was crossing the road.
(Source: Messenger Newspaper)


Computers in Revenue and the Department of Social Welfare are "not speaking to each other apparently," said Judge Kevin Kilrane at Sligo Court. The remark stemmed from the revelation that a person could be working and claiming benefits from a job for up to a year before any of the benefits would actually show up. The judge made the comments when dealing with a case in which Eamon Lynch of Chapel Hill, Sligo, was fined €300 for making a false statement to receive benefit. The court heard that there was an overpayment made of €3,731 to Lynch and, while some money was paid back, there remains an outstanding balance of €2,408 due.
(Source: Sligo Champion)


Nenagh is set for a feast of food and cycling on Sunday, April 22, when some of the country’s top cyclists come to town for the inaugural Visit Nenagh Classic. The organizers have teamed up with some of Tipperary’s top food producers and crafts people to bring a continental-style market atmosphere to the town on the day.
(Source: Tipperary Star)


A County Tyrone man has been charged with attempted murder in Adelaide, Australia.
Paul Anthony Fox, 24, from Clonoe, is accused of stabbing Robbie Corrigan, of Galbally, Co. Tyrone, on Easter Sunday. It is understood that Corrigan's life is not in danger. Fox, whose address was given as Croydon Park in Adelaide, was also accused of intentionally causing harm to an individual the previous day. The identity of the victim of that alleged attack is unclear.
(Source: BBC News)


A young Traveler family whose house was recently burned out received sinister threats by means of an anonymous letter last week, warning them to move on from their new accommodation or face the consequences.

Still coming to terms with a suspicious fire at his newly refurbished home, Michael McDonagh, a father of five, fears that he will be burned out again simply because he is a settled Traveler. McDonagh had moved his belongings into his new local authority house at Dunkitt, Kilmacow, a few miles from the city, but hours before he and his children were due to take up residence, the three-bed home sustained serious fire damage. Now McDonagh fears that the house he is renting at Polerone Green, in Mooncoin, will suffer the same fate. Garda have been contacted and are monitoring the situation.
(Source: Waterford News & Star)


One of Athlone town's seven Catholic national schools may lose its Catholic patronage, under new proposals published last week. The decision follows the recent publication of the final report of the Advisory Group to the Forum on Patronage and Pluralism in the Primary Sector. Athlone and Ballinasloe are listed in the report among 47 other towns across the country, in which some primary schools could lose their Catholic patronage during the first phase of proposed changes. The chosen towns are areas, identified by the Department of Education, where "there is a need for divesting to allow for diversity of schools.”
(Source: Westmeath Independent)


Two men charged over a €1.5m heroin seizure in Dublin last week appeared in court last Thursday. Edward Rooney, 52, and Des Ryan, 64, had been charged last week following a heroin seizure when their car was stopped and searched by gardaí at Old North Road, Finglas, on April 5.

Rooney of Ballinacorribeg, Roundwood, Co Wicklow was granted bail of €5,000, on the condition that he signs on daily at Wicklow garda station while Ryan, who lives in Enniscorthy, Co. Wexford, was granted bail of €10,000, providing he also sign in daily at his local garda station.
(Source: Irish Examiner)


A man charged with the murder of a Newcastle, Co, Wicklow charity worker has been acquitted by a judge during court proceedings in Zanzibar. Robert Stringer, 26, was found dead on a beach in Zanzibar in August 2009 having suffered multiple head injuries. He had spent the previous five weeks carrying out volunteer work in Tanzania before taking a short break on the picturesque island in the Indian Ocean.
(Source: Wicklow People)

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