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Body found in Ennis believed to be homeless man who slept in public toilets

Josef Pavelka came to national attention when a judge ordered the HSE to find accommodation for him so he wouldn’t have to sleep in the town’s public toilets.

Clare Road in Ennis (File photo)
Clare Road in Ennis (File photo)
Image: Google Maps

A BODY FOUND in a laneway in Ennis in Clare overnight is believed to be that of Josef Pavelka, a homeless man who had been forced to sleep in the public toilets in the town.

Pavelka, who had been living in Ennis for several years, had come to national attention last month when a District Court judge ordered the HSE to find accommodation for him.

Pavelka and his friend Piotr Baran, who was also homeless, were given emergency accommodation in a  tourist hostel in Galway, but had returned to Ennis within the past ten days. Josie O’Brien of the HELP centre in Ennis said Pavelka had been back on the streets in Ennis since he had returned from the hostel in Galway.

“It’s a very sad case,” Josie O’Brien told TheJournal.ie. “He accumulated a lot of issues and problems from living on the streets for so long. Mentally it was very tough”

She said Josef Pavelka and Piotr Baran were “two of the loveliest guys” and described Pavelka as “just a dote, he was lovely”.

“I know they drink but there wasn’t any help for them here for their addiction because of the language barrier and other problems,” she said. Pavelka, who was originally from the Czech Republic, had moved to Ireland to work in the construction industry but had lost his job and had been unable to claim social welfare benefits.

Pavelka, who was in his 50s, was an alcoholic and had appeared in court on public order charges. He had been before the court last Wednesday and had been due to appear again on 15 May.

A post-mortem is due to be carried out tomorrow.

Read: President Higgins says Irish still face ‘life draining impediments’ >

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