‘This bus departed Rathbourne Avenue at approximately 8.30am and travelled to Spindrift Avenue, Royal Canal Park, Dublin 15, where an incident took place’
It has emerged that the murder suspect was held by gardaí after people reported him shouting during a disturbing rant on a bus that he had killed someone.
The detention of the man at a bus stop in west Dublin then led to the discovery of the woman’s body in an apartment at Royal Canal Park.
The victim, named locally as Maud Coffey, had been stabbed multiple times in an attack in her home.
This evening gardai issued an appeal to passengers who were travelling on Dublin Bus route number 120 (Rathbourne Ave to Merrion Road) on the morning of Friday, January 13, to come forward.
“This bus departed Rathbourne Avenue at approximately 8.30am and travelled to Spindrift Avenue, Royal Canal Park, Dublin 15, where an incident took place,” gardai said.
Gardaí are appealing to anyone that was travelling on this bus, or to anyone who was in the vicinity of Spindrift Avenue, between 8.15am and 9am, to contact them.
They are also appealing to those with video footage from the bus or at any of these locations to make it available to them.
Meanwhile, a man in his 50s who arrested as part of the investigation remains in Garda custody at Finglas Garda Station under the provisions of Section 4 of the Criminal Justice Act 1984.
A post-mortem has been completed and a preliminary report provided to the investigating team. However, details are not being released for operational reasons.
The scene remains sealed off subject to an ongoing forensic and technical examination.
A Senior Investigating Officer (SIO) has been appointed to the case and a Garda Family Liaison Officer (FLO) continues to liaise with the family of the deceased.
Anyone with information is asked to Gardaí at Cabra on 01 6667400, The Garda Confidential Line on 1800 666 111, or any Garda Station.
The victim has been described as a “vulnerable lady” and her suspected killer is understood to have been battling drug issues as well as mental health matters in recent times.
Sources said there had been “major concerns” about the man’s health in recent times and it has emerged that a female relative contacted gardaí yesterday morning to carry out a welfare check on him.
Officers went to his home and discovered that he was not in the property in the north inner city.
About the same time, gardaí received a number of calls about a middle-aged man who was on a Dublin Bus who was scaring children and other commuters by claiming he had killed someone.
Gardaí were called and the man was detained at a west Dublin bus stop under the provisions of the Mental Health Act.
Video footage at the bus stop captures the clearly ill murder suspect ranting about “apostles”, “men” and “sex”.
After his detention, gardaí visited an apartment in Royal Canal Park, Ashtown, about 10am.
It was at this location they discovered the body of Ms Coffey, who was aged in her 40s, and who had suffered a number of fatal stab wounds.
Ms Coffey’s murder has caused deep shock in the area where she lived.
Tanya Murphy, who lives in the Royal Canal Park area, said she knew the woman.
“She was so nice,” she said. “She played with the local kids and would draw chalk on the ground with them. She used to pick up all the litter on the street. She was just so nice. She was harmless. She just kept to herself and didn’t bother anybody.
“I feel sick to know this happened on my doorstep, and to such a harmless woman. She wouldn’t hurt a fly.”