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Eddie Girvan murder: Greenisland pensioner was tied up on chair and stabbed in chest

Published 19/01/2016

Eddie Girvan was found dead at his Greenisland home.
Eddie Girvan was found dead at his Greenisland home.
Police officers and forensics at the scene of an incident on Station Road in Greenisland on January 19, 2016 (Photo by Kevin Scott)
Pictured is police officers and forensics at the scene of an incident on Station Road in Greenisland on January 19, 2016 ( Photo by Kevin Scott)
Collect picture of Eddie Girvan, the 70-year-old man found dead in his Station Road home in Greenisland last night. Pacemaker Belfast 19/01/2016
Pictured is police officers and forensics at the scene of an incident on Station Road in Greenisland on January 19, 2016 ( Photo by Kevin Scott )
Collect picture of Eddie Girvan, the 70-year-old man found dead in his Station Road home in Greenisland last night. Pacemaker Belfast 19/01/2016
PSNI officers and forensic officers investigate. Police have said that the roads will remain closed for the next few hours. Photo: Kirth Ferris/Pacemaker Press
Collect picture of Eddie Girvan, the 70-year-old man found dead in his Station Road home in Greenisland last night. Pacemaker Belfast 19/01/2016
PSNI officers and forensic officers investigate. Police have said that the roads will remain closed for the next few hours. Photo: Kirth Ferris/Pacemaker Press
PSNI officers and forensic officers investigate. Police have said that the roads will remain closed for the next few hours. Photo: Kirth Ferris/Pacemaker Press
PSNI officers and forensic officers investigate. Police have said that the roads will remain closed for the next few hours. Photo: Kirth Ferris/Pacemaker Press
PSNI officers and forensic officers investigate. Police have said that the roads will remain closed for the next few hours. Photo: Kirth Ferris/Pacemaker Press

Greenisland man Eddie Girvan, who was found murdered in his own home, was tied up on a chair and stabbed in the chest, police have revealed.

The body of Mr Girvan who was aged in his 70s, was discovered in his Station Road home shortly before 9.30pm on Monday. He was found with his hands bound and had suffered a stab wound to the chest.

A post-mortem examination will take place to determine the cause of death.

Police spent most of the day at the scene and on Tuesday afternoon declared his death as murder.

They said one line of investigation was that Mr Girvan died during a robbery in his home.

Detectives have appealed for anyone who saw his car in recent days to contact them.

A 29-year-old woman and two men, aged 23 and 24, have been arrested as part of the investigation and are currently in custody assisting police with their enquiries.

The Station Road remains closed between the junction of Upper Station Rd and School Lane and junction of Knockfergus Park and Station Road.

Mr Girvan had two daughters.

He was an antiques collector and it's thought he had valuable items including Rolex watches among his collection.

Neighbours have described him as a quiet man and said he was known as a bit of a character, but someone who kept himself to himself.

The officer leading the investigation, Detective Chief Inspector John McVea, said: "A post mortem examination will take place to confirm the exact cause of Mr Girvan’s death however I can confirm that, at this time, we are treating his death as murder.

"An incident such as this is unusual for a community like Greenisland and I am appealing to local people for their assistance.

"Detectives are making house to house enquiries because we need to speak to those local people who knew Eddie Girvan and saw him in the past few days.

"I also want to hear from anyone who saw or heard any activity at Mr Girvan’s home at 162 Station Road over the past weekend until yesterday morning around 7am.

"My final appeal point is about Eddie Girvan’s car, a silver Hyundai Sonata, registration number MKZ 9818. I need to hear from anyone who saw this silver car any time over the weekend either in Greenisland or Belfast until it was recovered in the Verner Street area of the city in the early hours of this morning.

"We know it was spotted being driven dangerously along the motorway between Rathcoole and Belfast yesterday. This is a shocking crime and our sympathies today are with Mr Girvan’s family and friends. "

Alliance MLA Stewart Dickson, who knew Mr Girvan well, said the local community was in shock following the death.

He said: “This stretch of road is a quiet residential area and this death will stun people there. I am very shocked and saddened by this incident, particularly as I knew the deceased well, as did many people in the area.

“This death will be hard to fathom for the whole community. My deepest condolences are with this poor man’s family and friends at this most traumatic of times.

“I would appeal to anyone with information on this sad incident to contact police immediately.”

East Antrim DUP MLA Gordon Lyons said he was "shocked and saddened" to hear of the death.

He said: "My thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends at this difficult time.

"The police are treating this death as suspicious and there is an ongoing investigation which means the Station Road will be closed between Greenisland station and Knockfergus Park, possibly for the next couple of days as the PSNI gather information. 

"I would encourage anyone that has information that may be useful to the police to get in contact with the PSNI or Crimestoppers.”

Anyone with information is asked to contact detectives at Seapark on the non-emergency number 101. Alternatively, anyone who does not want to provide their details can phone the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

DCI McVea thanked local residents for their patience and understanding since Monday night following a number of road closures in the area. He said these had been put in place to facilitate the investigation into Mr Girvan’s death and had only been maintained for as long as was absolutely necessary.

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