A 44-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of the murder of 87-year-old Thomas O’Halloran on a mobility scooter in west London.
The suspect was arrested at an address in Southall, west London, in the early hours of Thursday, the Metropolitan police said.
DCI Jim Eastwood, who is leading the investigation, said: “I would like to thank the public for their overwhelming support following this horrific incident. As a result of the release of a CCTV image yesterday, an arrest has been made and this investigation is progressing at pace.
“Mr O’Halloran’s family have been updated with this development and continue to be supported by specially trained officers.”
The statement came after officers were called to Cayton Road in Greenford on Tuesday to reports of a stabbing and O’Halloran was declared dead at the scene.
Detectives believe O’Halloran was stabbed in Western Avenue at about 4pm before managing to travel 75 yards (69 metres) or so on his mobility scooter to Runnymede Gardens, where he flagged down a member of the public for help.
O’Halloran was originally from Ennistymon, County Clare, in the west of Ireland. He is survived by his family, including his sister, two brothers, nieces and nephews. Martin Conway, a local Fine Gael senator, said O’Halloran visited Ireland regularly and that his death had left his home community in Ennistymon and north Clare in “deep shock and sadness”.
Conway said the passionate musician was very popular in Greenford and often busked for charity. Footage on social media shows O’Halloran busking to raise money for Ukraine months before the killing. In the video posted online in June, he can be seen playing his accordion and smiling, with a makeshift blue and yellow collection box strapped to his frame.
The former Labour MP Stephen Pound paid tribute to O’Halloran, an ex-constituent whom he knew from his regular presence in the area.
He told GB News: “Tom was a real local character. He would be outside Greenford station playing the accordion, occasionally the harmonica. He was a sweet, lovely man … He was well liked and well loved, but above all, he was one of those characters who would cement an area.”