MURDERED MARIE LAY DEAD FOR TWO YEARS
Man, 23, arrested as family of OAP appeal for justice
POLICE have launched a murder investigation after revealing a pensioner may have lain dead in her bed for more than two years.
A 23-year-old man is being questioned by the PSNI after the body of Marie Conlon, 68, was discovered at her Larkspur Rise home in West Belfast.
A family statement said yesterday: “Marie was very much loved and will be mourned greatly. She was a very independent person. We hope and pray justice will be done.”
THE family of a woman who was found dead in her bed last Friday are “trying to come to terms” with their loss.
Cops believe Marie Conlon, 68, may have lain undiscovered for more than two years at her home in Larkspur Rise, West Belfast.
A murder investigation was launched on Wednesday and a 23-year-old man has been arrested.
Sinn Fein councillor Stephen Magennis, a cousin of Ms Conlon, said the relatives were “trying to come to terms with all they are being told”.
A statement released by Marie’s family yesterday read: “We are shocked and heartbroken to learn about the loss of our beloved sister Marie Conlon.
“The tragic circumstances of her death make it all the more difficult to comprehend and accept.
“Marie was very much loved by her family and will be mourned greatly. She was a very independent person. “Numerous attempts had been made to contact her in person, and by other means, over the course of the past two years but at no point were suspicions raised she had been deceased.
“It is only with hindsight that the unimaginable now seems possible.
“We have been working closely with the PSNI to bring this devastating situation to an end.
“We hope and pray justice will be done and ask for privacy as we grieve the loss of our sister.”
Mr Magennis added: “It’s difficult enough that Marie’s been found dead, but for the family to be told she may have been murdered. On top of that hearing she may have been dead for two years.
“It’s obviously a very difficult time and they’re just waiting to hear what they can from the police.
“Marie was a very private person and they’re a private family so this is a lot to take in. We would reiterate the police’s call for anyone who has any information to please come forward.”
Detective Chief Inspector Alan Dickson said: “Authorities were alerted on Friday after concerns were raised about the welfare of Ms Conlon.
“Officers forced entry to her Larkspur Rise home and discovered her deceased in bed. It was apparent she had lain undiscovered for some time. A postmortem was carried out and the results suggest the death may have been suspicious.
“Detectives have established the last known sighting of Ms Conlon was in January 2015.
“It is our belief her death may have occurred at around this time.
“We have launched a murder investigation and a 23-year-old man has been arrested. He was detained in the West Belfast area and remains in custody.” Sinn Fein’s Alex Maskey has said residents of West Belfast are “shocked” by the death of Marie.
The West Belfast MLA added: “The local community are deeply upset and saddened.
“I would appeal to anyone with information to bring it to the PSNI.”
Officers found her deceased in bed. The death may have been suspicious DCI ALAN DICKSON ON WEDNESDAY
PROBE Forensics in West Belfast yesterday
FORENSICS Police forced entry into West Belfast home MURDER PROBE Forensics team on Wednesday
DISCOVERY Ms Conlon’s home in Larkspur Rise