The bodies of an elderly couple discovered in their home in Ireland, may have been there for over a year, police said Wednesday.
Nicholas Smith, 82, and his wife Hilary, 79, may have died as far back as November or December 2020, investigators believe. It was around that time the two immensely private retirees were last reported seen.
The couple's bodies were discovered by police Monday afternoon. The two are originally from England but moved to Ireland and bought the house for their retirement.
Concerned residents in their South Tipperary neighborhood eventually called police after becoming suspicious about a lack of movement of the couple's car and overgrown nature of the property.
A welfare check eventually led to the discovery of the bodies in the home near the Kilkenny and Waterford border.
Some neighbors believed the two had moved back to England during the pandemic.
Investigators with Garda Síochána, the Republic of Ireland's national police force, are looking at whether COVID-19 played a role in the deaths of the elderly couple. The two were found in separate rooms of the house.
A pathologist is conducting toxicology tests but it will take time for results to determine whether or not the virus played a role.
Police said they are keeping an open mind and that so far, it does not appear foul play was involved, nor does it seem there was any forced entry to the house.By Rabiu Tajudeen