Belfast Telegraph

Wednesday 30 July 2014

Police launch investigation into death of west Belfast pensioner

Police were today treating as suspicious the death of a pensioner whose body was found in a flat in west Belfast.

John Curran was found dead at his flat at Upper Suffolk Road around 9am yesterday. It is believed he was 72 years of age.

A spokesman for the PSNI confirmed that they were treating his death at this stage as suspicious and that inquiries were continuing.

A low level police presence was maintained at the flat overnight. This morning two female police officers stood outside his gate while a police car was parked at the rear of the property.

Neighbours and friends today expressed shock at the death of a man they described as “lovely”.

Jeanie McGuckian said: “He was everybody’s friend. Everyone knew John. He always made sure to talk to you. He liked to enjoy himself and knew everyone in the area.

“As neighbours we have decided we will have to be careful from now on. When something like this is at your door it is scary.”

It is understood the pensioner, who lived alone, had been targeted by vandals a month ago.

Mr Curran’s window was smashed with a bottle during the attack.

Sinn Fein councillor Gerard O’Neill described the death as a “tragedy”. He said: “John was a gentleman and a real character in the area. Everyone knew him and he spoke to everybody.

A post mortem was due to be carried out today.

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