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Man (28) shot in Belfast had been quizzed over murder of 'Jock' Davison

By Chris McCullough

Published 07/05/2016

A police officer at the scene of the shotgun attack on Scott McHugh at Distillery Court in west Belfast yesterday morning
A police officer at the scene of the shotgun attack on Scott McHugh at Distillery Court in west Belfast yesterday morning
Gerard ‘Jock’ Davison, who was shot dead by an unknown gunman in the Markets area of the city a year ago

A man arrested in connection with the murder of a leading Belfast IRA member almost exactly a year ago has been shot and seriously wounded.

The injured man has been named as Scott McHugh, who was rushed to hospital yesterday morning after being shot four times in west Belfast.

It is understood he is from the Markets area. He was blasted by a shotgun at his aunt's house in Distillery Court around 9.45am. He is said to be in a stable condition in hospital.

Last year Mr McHugh was questioned over the murder of IRA commander Gerard 'Jock' Davison in the Markets. He was later released without charge.

Comrades of Davison later took revenge on another former IRA man, Kevin McGuigan, whom they blamed for the killing.

Neighbours at the scene rushed to the victim's aid yesterday morning when he staggered out of the house with his wounds.

A woman witness said he was shot four times. She added it was lucky no children were hurt, as primary schools were closed over the holiday period.

The woman, who did not want to be named, added: "The man came staggering out of the front door of the house which belongs to his aunt.

"Although it was obvious he had been shot, he was able to stagger out of the house onto the street and that is where I found him.

"He was in a bad way and had been shot four times, as he had blood coming from his head, his arm, his chest and his foot.

"His right arm was already in a plaster cast and it appeared he had even been shot through the cast. He kept saying to me that he couldn't breathe, and that he wanted to close his eyes.

"I told him to keep his eyes open as I comforted him until the ambulance arrived.

"This is normally a quiet area with lots of children running around.

"It is very fortunate that no kids were hurt at the time of the shooting because they were all in the street, as the primary school was closed due to the holiday period.

"I hope he is ok. It's a sight I won't forget for a long time."

The officer leading the investigation, Detective Inspector Chris Wilson, said: "The victim is undergoing surgery and we believe he will pull through.

"Although we are following a number of lines of enquiry in this investigation, we are keeping an open mind as to a motive.

"We believe two people approached a house at 11 Distillery Court and the 28-year-old victim was shot a number of times inside the property. The attackers then made off on foot towards the Grosvenor Road.

"We have a report of a man aged in his mid 30s running along Distillery Street onto the Grosvenor Road and into Leeson Street shortly after the shooting. He was well groomed with a ginger beard and was wearing a blue tracksuit with the hood up, a hat and leather gloves.

"I am appealing to anyone who saw this man this morning to contact us. I would ask anyone with information to speak to detectives at Musgrave police station.

Alternatively, callers who do not wish to provide their details can contact independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111."

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