Pensioner charged with murder in Mervue

A garda on duty at the house at Cardinal Cushing Road in Mervue. PHOTOS: Enda Cunningham

An old age pensioner was arrested and charged this morning with the murder of a 38-year-old man in Galway City last year.

Gardaí arrested Noel Lenihan (67) at 7.45am this morning and brought him to Galway Garda Station where he was charged with the murder of well-known runner, Christopher McGrath, at Lenihan’s home at 6 Cardinal Cushing Road, Mervue, in the early hours of March 12, 2017.

Lenihan was brought in custody before Galway District Court at 10.30am where Garda Neil Lydon gave evidence he had replied: “I didn’t want to be strangled to death” when the murder charge was put to him in the Garda station earlier.

Reading an application for Free Legal Aid, which had been handed into court by solicitor Brian Gilmartin, Judge Mary Fahy said the charge before the court was very serious.

She noted Lenihan was an old age pensioner and his income reached the threshold for granting the application.

The judge also noted that as the charge was one of murder, there could be no application for bail in the District Court.

She remanded the accused in custody to appear before her court again next Monday, May 14, via video link from Castlerea Prison.

Mr McGrath, who was a member of Galway City Harriers, was found with a fatal knife wound to the neck at Mr Lenihan’s home at 4am on the day in question.