Jozef Puska, 31, remanded in custody charged with murder of Ashling Murphy

Jozef Puska was heckled as he was taken from a Garda car into court on Wednesday evening
Jozef Puska, 31, remanded in custody charged with murder of Ashling Murphy

Jozef Puska, 31, with an address in Lynally Grove,Tullamore in Co Offaly, was brought before a special sitting of Tullamore District Court this evening.

A man has been charged at Tullamore District court with the murder of Ashling Murphy in Co Offaly.

Jozef Puska, 31, was brought before a special sitting of Tullamore District Court on Wednesday evening.

Mr Puska, with an address in Lynally Grove, Tullamore in Co Offaly, was heckled as he was taken from a Garda car into court yesterday evening.

He was remanded in custody at Cloverhill Prison after the brief hearing.

Jozef Puska, 31, is led in to Tullamore District Court where he is charged with the murder of teacher Ashling Murphy who was found dead after going for a run along the Grand Canal in Tullamore, Co Offaly on Wednesday afternoon.
Jozef Puska, 31, is led in to Tullamore District Court where he is charged with the murder of teacher Ashling Murphy who was found dead after going for a run along the Grand Canal in Tullamore, Co Offaly on Wednesday afternoon.

Detective Sergeant David Scahill gave evidence of arrest, charge and caution and said Mr Puska replied "no" when cautioned earlier.

Inspector Kieran Keyes applied to Judge Catherine Staines for a remand in custody in Cloverhill Prison to a sitting of Cloverhill District Court on January 26.

The accused, wearing a grey hoodie and trousers, was assisted by a Slovakian interpreter in court.

Eoin Lysaght, who was appointed as defence solicitor made an application for legal aid and for the services of an interpreter for the future court appearance.

A statement of his means was provided to the court during the brief hearing.

A number of family members stood in court with framed pictures of Ms Murphy.

A crowd estimated at 300 people, many of them women, shouted obscenities and jeered as he was being led into court and when he was taken away.

Withholding information

The 23-year-old teacher was attacked while out running along the Grand Canal near Tullamore, on the afternoon of Wednesday, January 12.

A second man, arrested under Section 30 of the Offences Against the State Act 1939, has been released without charge.

Gardaí are to prepare a file for the State prosecutor in relation to a man arrested on suspicion of withholding information about the murder of Ashling Murphy.

The individual, who is aged in his 30s, was arrested on Wednesday morning.

A Garda statement said: “The second male arrested under the provisions of Section 30 Offences Against the State Act 1939 has been released without charge from Garda custody and a file will be prepared for the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions.” 

Floral tributes laid at the Grand Canal in Tullamore, Co Offaly, where primary school teacher Ashling Murphy was found dead after going for a run on Wednesday afternoon. Picture: Brian Lawless/PA Wire
Floral tributes laid at the Grand Canal in Tullamore, Co Offaly, where primary school teacher Ashling Murphy was found dead after going for a run on Wednesday afternoon. Picture: Brian Lawless/PA Wire

The arrest marks a very busy period in the murder investigation.

The Garda investigation is composed of members and detectives in Tullamore Garda Station and detectives from the National Bureau of Criminal Investigation.

Gardaí have made an appeal to anyone who might have given a lift to a man leaving the scene of the Grand Canal on Wednesday afternoon.

Gardaí were along the stretch of the canal on Tuesday asking members of the public for any relevant information.

  - Additional reporting from Press Association

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