Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 31 July 2014

People are sickened by brutal murder, says parish priest

The parish priest in Craigavon said last night that people had been sickened by the brutal murder of Stephen Carroll.

Fr Martin McAlinden said the killers had no support in the community and urged anyone with information to come forward.

“The people I’ve talked to today are shocked and sickened by what has happened,” he said.

“What is so sad is the fact that this was a police officer doing his work and his duty.

“He was attending a call to a member of the community when he was gunned down and that is really sickening.

“People with any information should go to the police. They must not be intimidated by fear. We saw on Monday how all the political parties spoke with one voice and to me that was really positive.

“The actions of those behind the killings here and at Massereene have been counter-productive because the politicians are going to sit down, join together and be even more committed to the peace process.

“There is a great sense of community here in Craigavon. It is a bustling place, things had really been on the up, and this kind of attack does nothing for our community.

“The vast majority, 99.9% of people here, would be abhorred by what happened last night and the people who did it represent no-one only themselves.”

The Church of Ireland and Catholic Bishops of Dromore issued a joint statement condemning the killing. Bishop Harold Miller and Bishop John McAreavey described the murder as “a morally bankrupt act”.

“Those who perpetrated this murder and other recent atrocities have nothing to offer the future of our society,” they said.

“Their ‘god’ is destruction. They are seeking to destroy the peace we are building — the normalising of cross-community policing, the cross-party working of the Assembly, and the desire to draw a line under 30 years of troubles. In fact, they will destroy only their own souls.”

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