Alleged attacker arrested after ‘accidentally shooting himself’ during chase
The 37-year-old man was dumped outside a hospital after the incident linked to a Traveller feud in South Armagh.
A suspected attacker understood to have accidentally shot himself as he pursued his alleged victim has been arrested on suspicion of attempted murder.
The 37-year-old man underwent surgery last night after being dumped at the entrance of a hospital in Newry, Northern Ireland by other men also alleged to have been involved in the assault.
The incident unfolded in Forkhill in South Armagh at around 6.20pm on Tuesday night when a gang of men, potentially four-strong, arrived by car in Park Urney and attacked a man in a parked car.
The targeted 53-year-old man got out of the vehicle and attempted to run away. He was assaulted as he fled, potentially struck on the head with a firearm.
As the chase continued, one of the alleged attackers fell over, sustaining a gunshot wound to the stomach as he did so.
This was a reckless series of events and it only by sheer luck that we are not dealing with a tragic situation today PSNI Detective Inspector Handley
Police Service of Northern Ireland Detective Inspector Handley said: “At around 6:31pm, it was reported this injured male who sustained a gunshot wound was driven to Daisy Hill Hospital in a blue Honda Accord where he was left outside before the vehicle sped off.
“At around 8:20pm, it was reported that a Blue Honda Accord had been discovered burnt out in Mourne View Park in Newry.”
The incident is understood to relate to a dispute involving members of the Traveller community.
The assaulted man was also treated in hospital but later released.
The man, 37, who underwent surgery for the shotgun wound was said to be in a critical but stable condition on Wednesday morning.
He was later arrested on suspicion of a number of offences, including attempted murder, possession of a firearm with intent to endanger life and criminal damage.
Mr Handley said: “This was a reckless series of events and it only by sheer luck that we are not dealing with a tragic situation today.
“Two men ended up in hospital, however, anyone who was in the vicinity last night could well have been caught up in this and injured.
“Our investigation into these incidents is underway and we are working to establish a motive for what occurred.”
He urged anyone with information to come forward.