Husband charged with murder of Cork wife

Husband charged with murder of Cork wife
James Kilroy of Kilbree Lower, Westport, Co Mayo being taken away by detectives at Castlebar District Court this afternoon. Picture: Conor McKeown

A 46-year-old man appeared in court yesterday afternoon charged with the murder of his wife.

James Kilroy, with an address at Kilbree Lower, Westport, Co. Mayo, was brought before Judge Fiona Lydon at a special sitting of Castlebar District Court.

He has been in custody in connection with the death of his wife, Valerie French Kilroy, a 41-year-old mother of three, originally from Co Cork.

The accused showed no emotion during the brief, five minute, hearing.

Detective Sergeant Michael Doherty, told today's hearing he arrested the accused at 11.45 am this morning and at 12.45 am he charged him murder.

In reply to the charge, after caution, Det Sgt Doherty outlined, the accused made no reply.

Garda Inspector Denis Harrington applied for a remand in custody to Harristown (Castlerea Prison) court on June 21.

Gary Mulchrone, solicitor, said there were serious concerns about the mental health of the accused, concerns that had become apparent since his detention.

Mr. Mulchrone said his client was in immediate need of medical attention and a psychiatric evaluation.

Remanding the accused in custody, Judge Lydon recommended the medical attention sought by Mr. Mulchrone as well as an independent pyschiatric assessment in due course.

Valerie French Kilroy
Valerie French Kilroy

Free legal aid was also granted on the application of Mr Mulchrone.

A small group of relatives, as well as Reverend Val Rogers, Westport based Church of Ireland Rector, were in court for the brief hearing.

Rev Rogers spoke briefly to the accused before he was led away by detectives following the hearing.

Kilroy stared forward impassively during the entire proceedings.

Arrangements have yet to be finalised for the funeral of Ms Kilroy, a popular HSE employee.

A HSE employee, Ms Kilroy worked as an occupational therapist. She moved from Cork to Mayo 10 years ago.

Writing in a HSE magazine in 2009, she talked about her job. "I work as an occupational therapist (OT) in the mental health community services covering north Mayo. Along with distressing symptoms, psychiatric illnesses can turn the lives of individuals and their families into disarray.

"My role is to work with people to enable them to return to doing everyday activities, so they can take control of their world and regain a meaningful life for themselves.

My day is as varied as the needs of the people I work with."

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