A 48-year-old man found murdered in Co Antrim suffered a traumatic and frightening death, a senior detective has said.
The body of Anthony McErlain was discovered in a house in the Broombeg View area of Ballycastle on Thursday night.
A 33-year-old man arrested on suspicion of murder in the wake of the find remained in police custody this evening.
Detective Chief Inspector Gareth Talbot, the senior investigating officer, said: “While we are awaiting the results of a post mortem, what is clear is that Mr McErlain suffered a traumatic and frightening death.
“I initially described this killing as a heinous crime and I stand by that assessment.”
He added: “The investigation team is extremely keen to speak to witnesses or anyone who may have spoken to Mr McErlain over recent days. We would especially like to hear from anyone who was in the Broombeg area at any time between 5pm and 8.30pm yesterday and who may have witnessed or overheard an altercation or disturbance, in or around number 4 Broombeg View.”
Assembly member Daithi McKay said Ballycastle had been left in shock.
“This is a terrible tragedy,” said the Sinn Féin representative. “After speaking to local people this morning it is clear that the victim was well known and well liked in the town. That makes this crime all the more senseless.
“Our thoughts and the thoughts of the entire community are with the family at this very difficult time.
“This was a particularly brutal murder and anyone with any information should not hesitate in bringing this forward to the PSNI.”