Gardaí have arrested a man aged in his 60s in relation to the discovery of a woman’s badly burned body in a car in Co Cork.
The man has been arrested on suspicion of unlawful killing and is currently detained at Femroy Garda Station under Section 4 of the Criminal Justice Act 1984.
The woman has been named locally as Mary O’Keeffe (72) from Dromahane, a mother of three who worked as a cook with a sheltered housing group in Mallow.
In a statement on Friday evening, gardaí said: “The postmortem on the body of a female recovered from the burnt out car is currently ongoing.”
The Irish Times reports that it is hoped the postmortem will establish if Ms O’Keeffe was a victim of foul play.
While her death was being treated by investigators as “suspicious” on Thursday night, sources would not say if they were set to begin a homicide investigation.
On Friday, gardaí said they were continuing to investigate the circumstances surrounding the discovery of the body.
Assistant state Pathologist Dr Margaret Bolster completed her examination of the scene on Friday morning, gardaí said.
The body has since been transferred to Cork University Hospital for the postmortem scheduled for Friday afternoon to take place.
Gardaí said the Garda Technical Bureau were continuing to carry out an examination of the scene and two vehicles involved in the incident.
Ms O’Keeffe’s body was discovered on Thursday afternoon after gardaí were alerted to a burning car in a forest clearing in the Doneraile area, some 500 metres from the road.
The fire was brought under control by Cork county fire service.
Gardaí were also alerted to a man seen running from the woods, with initial reports suggesting shorts may have been fired.
An Armed Support Unit from Fermoy found the man, a 62-year-old from Co Limerick, in the Awbeg river some three kilometres from the scene.
The man was pulled from the water and taken to Cork University Hospital (CUH) to be treated for hypothermia and some minor burn injuries.
In an update on Friday, gardaí said: “The man, aged in his 60s, who was rescued from the river continues to receive treatment in Cork University Hospital. His condition is believed to be stable.”
Gardaí were hoping to be given permission by doctors to speak to the man on Friday.
They believe Ms O’Keeffe made her own way to the woods, as her car was found parked a short distance from the burned vehicle, which was registered to the Limerick man.
Gardaí are appealing for anyone who was in the Doneraile area between 3pm and 5pm, particular anyone with mobile phone footage or dashcam footage, to contact Fermoy Garda Station on 025-82100 or the Garda Confidential Line on 1800-666-111.