GARDAÍ investigating the murder of homeless man Kilcrohane native Timmy Hourihane, at the Mardyke Walk in Cork city on October 13th, arrested two men this week.
However, both men have now been released without charge, although a file is being prepared for the DPP.
A man in his 20s was arrested on Friday and was detained at the Bridewell Garda Station under Section 4 of the Criminal Justice Act. On Monday, gardaí made a second arrest. The second man, in his 30s, was detained at Portlaoise Garda Station, under the same law.
Timmy Hourihane, a trained chef, was found near the burned-out tent he had been living in, last October. When found, he was in an unconscious state with injuries to his head and body and was taken to CUH, where he subsequently died.
His death caused widespread shock and outrage and prompted renewed calls for action to be taken on the city’s housing crisis.
Timmy had trained as a chef and worked with the Hilton hotel group in the UK, but came back to Ireland when his marriage ended. He later developed an addiction to alcohol following the death of his partner, Michael, from cancer.
Sen Denis O’Donovan, another Kilcrohane native, said he remembered the teenage Timmy as ‘a handsome young man, who was naturally outgoing but came from a very reserved family.’
Carrigtowhill-based photographer John Finn who randomly took what’s thought to be the last photograph of Timmy, a few days before his death, spoke to The Southern Star at the time.
John Finn said he didn’t know if he was doing the right thing by sharing the photograph on social media, but the response to the cheeky, charming image had been overwhelmingly positive. It was Timmy who had playfully offered to pose for the photographer who was doing a commercial shoot at Castle Street in Cork.
‘He struck me as a humorous guy. He was very well spoken as well, and well dressed. He certainly didn’t fit the caricature a lot of people have of a homeless person,’ said John.
‘I took the few shots and as he was leaving, he said, “I am Tim Hourihane from Bantry.”’ The photographer said his parting line is what stayed with him when he heard the news of his death a few days later.
‘When the name was released I had this spooky feeling,’ said John, who initially hesitated about publishing the photograph because he didn’t want to appear exploitative. But people who knew Timmy responded warmly, saying: ‘You captured his essence.’
There are an estimated 30 homeless people living in tents at Mardyke Walk – a near permanently waterlogged field that is off the beaten track but close to the services in the city.