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Murder of Thomas “Ta” Power & John O’Reilly on the 20/1/87

The Gardaí at Drogheda Garda Station are investigating the double murder of Thomas “Ta” Power and John O’Reilly that occurred on Tuesday 20th January 1987 at the Rosnaree Hotel, Dublin Road, Drogheda, Co. Louth.

Thomas, John and two other men arrived at the Rosnaree Hotel at approximately 4.30pm. They were travelling a maroon coloured Ford Capri saloon car. They entered the bar area of the hotel and ordered sandwiches and bottles of orange.

At approximately 5.15pm three men drove into the car park of the hotel in brown Toyota Cressida, registration number 273CZD. Two of the men entered the hotel, one of the men looked into the dining room but it was closed. The two men approached the bar, they pulled nylon stockings over their faces and entered the bar. Once inside they produced firearms and began firing in the direction of Thomas and the three men. A number of shots were fired. The four men attempted to escape. The two gunmen fled from the hotel to the awaiting Toyota.

John O’Reilly was pronounced dead, Thomas was taken to hospital and was pronounced dead a short time later. The other two men were seriously injured.

Thomas’s sisters make an emotional appeal for information in relation to the murder of their brother.  


• One of the gunmen was described as late thirties in age with black hair and a strong black beard with a thin face. He wore a green knee length mackintosh coat with a felt type hat. The second gunman is described as late thirties, clean shaven and taller than the first man, he wore a long coat and a hat.

• The Toyota Cressida was recovered burnt out at a wooded area in Summerhil, Co. Meath the following evening at 9.30pm, a distance of thirty one miles away.

• Gardaí are hoping, that with the passage of time, a change in personal circumstances, someone may now be in a position to come forward.

Contact Superintendent Andrew Watters, Drogheda  Garda Station on 041 9874200