Belfast Telegraph

Man shot by mistake in 'attack linked to drugs feud'

By Eamon Sweeney

A shooting incident at the weekend in which a man sustained a wound to his neck was a case of mistaken identity linked to an ongoing drugs feud, it has been claimed.

Two shots were fired through the living room window of a house at Ashley Crescent in Lurgan at around 10.45pm on Sunday.

The victim was treated in hospital and was later discharged when the injuries were not found to be serious.

Sources in Lurgan have, however, told the Belfast Telegraph that the attack was part of an ongoing drugs-related feud in the area. It is believed that the attack was an attempt to intimidate.

It is also understood that the person allegedly behind the attack has a list of previous convictions stretching back over a decade.

Political representatives unreservedly condemned the armed attack.

DUP MLA Carla Lockhart said that she had been in contact with the PSNI about the incident throughout Sunday night.

"My thoughts are with all those involved, particularly the young man who was injured," she said. "I am thankful that he has been discharged.

"However, the entire event must have been traumatising for all involved. To have a home targeted in this way is worrying for all involved.

"It's a quiet residential area and people are shocked at this turn of events.

"Thankfully we are not dealing with a fatality. These gunshots could have killed."

The UUP's Colin McCusker, chairperson of Armagh, Banbridge and Craigavon Council, said: "The episode smacked of gangsterism. Of course I completely condemn this attack and I hope that those involved are brought to justice," he said.

SDLP councillor Joe Nelson said: "This type of incident appears on the news far too often from Lurgan.

"There have been murders in recent years both here and in Craigavon.

"I am asking people with any information to let the police know immediately.

"We have to get guns off the streets once and for all."

When asked whether detectives were pursuing mistaken identity as a line of enquiry, if the attack was related to an ongoing drugs-related feud in Lurgan and if they suspected any paramilitary involvement, a spokesman for the PSNI said: "The investigation into this shooting is at an early stage.

"A motive for the incident has not yet been established and all lines of enquiry are being investigated at this time."

Detectives are appealing for anyone with information to come forward.

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