Man held in connection with murder of primary school teacher who was out on afternoon jog

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A man arrested in connection with the suspected murder of a young woman in Ireland while she was out for an afternoon jog is to face further questioning.

The woman has been named locally as primary school teacher Ashling Murphy, from Tullamore, County Offaly.

She died after being attacked while running along the canal bank at Cappincur at around 4pm on Wednesday.

Superintendent Eamonn Curley said at a news briefing: “At this stage, there is no information that the victim and her killer were known to each other.

“From our enquiries we have carried out, we believe this crime was committed by one male who acted alone.”

He said that a 40-year-old man has been arrested and is being detained at Tullamore Garda Station, and that officers retain an “open mind” in the investigation.

Superintendent Eamonn Curley speaks to the media near to the scene in Tullamore, Co Offaly after a young woman, who has been named locally as Ashling Murphy, was killed on Wednesday evening. She died after being attacked while she was jogging along the canal bank at Cappincur at around 4pm on Wednesday. Picture date: Thursday January 13, 2022.
Image:
Superintendent Eamonn Curley updates the media and (below) flowers left at a Garda checkpoint
Flowers are left at a Garda checkpoint in Tullamore after a young woman, who has been named locally as Ashling Murphy, was killed in Co Offaly. She died after being attacked while she was jogging along the canal bank at Cappincur at around 4pm on Wednesday. Picture date: Thursday January 13, 2022.

The incident has shocked the country, drawing comments from local councillors and government ministers.

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Declan Harvey, Fianna Fail councillor for the area, described Tullamore as “probably the safest place in the world”.

“After yesterday, people will be nervous to go down to the canal,” he said.

“It’s a lovely area and helps clear your head. It’s a very popular route that everyone takes. People walk their dogs, people with their kids and prams.”

Justice Minister Helen McEntee tweeted: “My thoughts tonight are with the family of the young woman killed in a truly shocking crime, with her friends and with her community.”

Gardai are appealing for information, and asking anyone who was in the Cappincur/Canal walk area of Tullamore before 4pm on Wednesday to make contact with them.

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