Belfast Telegraph

Victims shaken by armed car hijack in Co Londonderry

By Staff Reporter

Three men have been left shaken after their car was hijacked by an armed man in Greysteel, Co Londonderry.

The men were in a blue Renault Clio when the incident happened at the Vale Centre shortly after 10pm on Friday.

A dark Volkswagen Golf pulled up and a woman got out. The vehicle's driver –a man armed with a screwdriver– appeared and threatened the occupants of the Clio.

They forced them out of the car. The armed man, the woman and another man got into the car and headed off towards the direction of the Culmore Road.

A police spokesman said that the all three men were left badly shaken. It is believed that their mobile phones were left in the car during the incident. Police found the stolen vehicle burnt out out in Derry shortly before 6am on Saturday.

It was located in a carpark at Alder Road, just off Culmore Road.

Officers are appealing to anyone who witnessed the hijacking of the car, or it being abandoned, to contact them on the non-emergency number 101. Information can be passed on through the charity Crimestoppers on 0845 600 8000.

Plea after double pipe bombing

A disabled woman escaped injury but was left badly shaken after her home was attacked with a pipe bomb in Co Antrim.

Two houses were targeted in separate incidents in Ballymoney at about 4.15am on Saturday.

The explosions happened in the Henry Street and Hannah Court areas. A woman, aged in her 50s, was badly shaken after a pipe bomb exploded at her Hanna Court home.

A window at the front of the property was damaged. Ten minutes later, a car and a house were damaged in the second pipe bomb attack which occurred at Henry Street. A man in his 40s also escaped injury in the incident.

A PSNI spokeswoman said: "The occupants of both houses have been left very shocked."

Detectives investigating have appealed for information to be reported to 101.

Appeal for more foster carers

More than one in four adults in Northern Ireland would consider becoming a foster carer, a higher percentage than in any other part of the UK.

That's according to a poll released by leading charity the Fostering Network. The YouGov survey, coinciding with the start of Foster Care Fortnight, found that 29% of adults here would consider becoming a foster carer now or in the future, compared with a UK average of 24%. Fostering Network Northern Ireland's Margaret Kelly said: "Foster carers across Northern Ireland provide skilled and dedicated care for some of our most vulnerable children and young people. But we need more. We must match our enthusiasm for fostering with more people coming forward to give children and young people a loving home."

For events happening during Foster Care Fortnight, visit www.adoptionandfostering.hscni.net.

Cenotaph attack: Two charged

Two men have been charged in connection with damage caused to war memorial wreaths in Newry.

The 20-year-old and 42-year old men have been charged with criminal damage and disorderly behaviour. The 42-year-old has also been charged with indecent behaviour.

The men were arrested after two people were spotted on CCTV in the Bank Parade area throwing wreaths and crosses from the monument into the river at about 12.20am yesterday. They are both due to appear in court next month.

Ulster Unionist councillor David Taylor said: "Desecrating a cenotaph that is there to remember people from all sections of our society who fought and died in defence of the freedoms which we enjoy today is the lowest of the low."

Depression research cash boost

A study into the causes of clinical depression is being given £4.7m in the hope that new treatments can be developed.

Over the next five years, researchers will look at groups of people at risk of depression and use a series of tests to discover if specific patients correspond to certain disorders.

Experts say that rather than being one disease, clinical depression is a collection of different disorders with one common symptom – low mood.

The University of Edinburgh study will use data from Generation Scotland – a large family-based sample of more than 21,000 people.

Scientists will look at groups of people who have known depression risk factors, including a family history.

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