Belfast Telegraph

Man held after death and pub siege

A man has been arrested following the death of a woman and a siege in a pub.

Armed gardai and the army were forced to seal off streets in Bailieborough, Co Cavan, last night after a man barricaded himself and customers in the bar.

The body of a woman had been discovered at a house earlier in the evening.

The man, in his late 50s, went to the Square Bar in Main Street at about 8pm and at gunpoint ordered the doors of the pub to be shut and refused to let people leave.

It is understood he lives locally, is a regular in the bar and a number of the people he took hostage knew him.

Gardai had appealed for a blackout on reporting of the incident when the alarm was first raised and requested media not to disclose details for several hours.

Locals reported that the man had barricaded himself in the pub with the customers.

Armed gardai were tasked to the street outside the pub for several hours and it is also understood that trained negotiators were called in to try to bring the siege to an end.

People living in the town centre were asked to remain in their homes during the incident and traffic was diverted around the town.

It is understood the dead woman was a mother of four.

Gardai said the body of the 56-year-old woman was discovered at a house on the Drumbannon estate - 10 minutes away from the pub where the siege took place.

The scene has been preserved for technical investigation and the state pathologist is expected to carry out a post-mortem examination later today.

The suspect, also 56, was arrested at 3am at the Square Bar, where he had been holed up for around eight hours.

He is being held at Bailieborough Garda Station under the provisions of Section 50 of the Criminal Justice Act 2007.

The scene at the pub has also been preserved for technical examination.

Gardai have appealed for anyone who may have witnessed anything suspicious in Drumbannon to come forward.

The dead woman has been named locally as Patricia Kierans.

Three of her children have emigrated to Australia. The fourth was on a flight to meet his siblings when his mother was killed, a priest in the town said.

"It's a time like this that it's the four adult children I would be concerned about. Three of them are in Australia and one of them was on his flight when this happened," curate Father Oliver O'Reilly told RTE.

"To face this on such a long journey home is awful. My thoughts and prayers are with them all."

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