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wrong man Man arrested for Ashling Murphy's murder placed in safe house after being ruled out of probe

Last night, a 40-year-old man was released from Garda custody and declared no longer to be a suspect in the case

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Ashling Murphy was attacked as she jogged by a canal (Comhaltas Ceoltoiri Eireann/PA)

Ashling Murphy was attacked as she jogged by a canal (Comhaltas Ceoltoiri Eireann/PA)

Ashling Murphy was attacked as she jogged by a canal (Comhaltas Ceoltoiri Eireann/PA)

A man ruled out as a suspect in the murder of Ashling Murphy has been "vilified" after his identity was shared online, his solicitor has said.

The man who is no longer a suspect remains at a safe location for his own protection following his release from custody.

It’s understood that he had repeatedly denied any involvement in the murder during his garda interviews.

His solicitor Donal Farrelly told the Irish Independent that his client’s life has been made “unbearable” after he was identified online.

Mr Farrelly, of Donal Farrelly & Co Solicitors, also said that people can’t lose sight of what happened to Ashling Murphy but that his client was wrongly “vilified” by people.

“Doesn’t this show the vital importance of the presumption of innocence.

“This is the most important thing to come out of this, and we have to keep that in our focus.

“It is a terrible tragedy what happened to this lady, what happened to her and her family, but this man has been vilified on social media.

“Absolutely vilified, and everybody clearly identified who he was on social media.

“It has made life unbearable for him I would say.

“It is dreadful- the amount of hurt, and anger, and ire about him on social media is frightening,” Mr Farrelly said.

Donal Farrelly was speaking after gardai released a statement saying the man had been eliminated from their enquiries “and is no longer a suspect”.

According to RTÉ News, detectives continued to interview witnesses and gather forensic evidence, including DNA, and as a result of their inquiries, they discovered yesterday evening that the man could not have been involved in the murder.

The man who had been held at Tullamore Garda station since Wednesday was allowed to leave custody.

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Floral tributes at a vigil attended by hundreds in Galway city centre for Ashling Murphy on Thursday evening. Picture: PA

Floral tributes at a vigil attended by hundreds in Galway city centre for Ashling Murphy on Thursday evening. Picture: PA

Floral tributes at a vigil attended by hundreds in Galway city centre for Ashling Murphy on Thursday evening. Picture: PA

In a statement, Gardaí said: “This male has been eliminated from Garda enquiries and is no longer a suspect.

The shock development comes after officers had earlier stated that they were only looking for one individual in relation to the attack.

Gardaí have now issued a fresh appeal for members of the public to come forward with information in relation the death of Ms Murphy.

It is understood that a post-mortem which took place yesterday showed she died by strangulation.

Two women witnessed part of the attack which took place along a popular jogging route in Tullamore

Detectives believe that other people out walking may have seen Ms Murphy or her attacker in the area around 4pm on Wednesday.

This morning, gardai renewed an appeal for information, in particular in relation to a Falcon Storm mountain bike described as having “straight handlebars and distinctive yellow/green front forks.

“Gardaí continue to appeal for any person with any information on this fatal assault, who may not already have spoken to investigators, to come forward with that information,” a statement said.

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23-year-old teacher Ashling Murphy was killed while jogging along a canal bank in Tullamore. Photo by Steve Humphreys

23-year-old teacher Ashling Murphy was killed while jogging along a canal bank in Tullamore. Photo by Steve Humphreys

23-year-old teacher Ashling Murphy was killed while jogging along a canal bank in Tullamore. Photo by Steve Humphreys

Anyone with information is asked to contact Tullamore Garda Station on 057 932 7600, the Garda Confidential Line on 1800 666 111, or any Garda Station.

Meanwhile, Ashling Murphy's heartbroken parents have paid tribute to their "beautiful, talented" girl as they attempted to come to terms with the devastation of her sudden and inexplicable death

Comforted by neighbours, friends, and the local community in the rural townland of Blueball near Tullamore, they spoke of a young woman with energy, drive, commitment, talent and love

The photographs on the walls of their family home reflect the love and pride that her parents have for all their children.

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Flowers at a Garda checkpoint after the primary school teacher’s death (Dominic McGrath/PA)

Flowers at a Garda checkpoint after the primary school teacher’s death (Dominic McGrath/PA)

Flowers at a Garda checkpoint after the primary school teacher’s death (Dominic McGrath/PA)

Now they are trying to think about what life will be like without their youngest child, their baby girl who was just starting out on her career as a teacher with a life of opportunities ahead of her.

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