Belfast Telegraph

Driver survives gun attack after vehicle is rammed in Derry

By Donna Deeney

A man fled to the safety of a nearby police station after the car he was driving was rammed and shot at in Londonderry.

It is believed a shotgun was fired by the occupants of a silver Peugeot car at the man's black vehicle, but he managed to evade his attackers.

The silver Peugeot was later found burned out in the Lincoln Courts area about a mile from Sevenoaks in the Waterside.

The area where the man's car was rammed and the area where the shots were fired were both cordoned off yesterday, as was the area around the burnt-out car in Lincoln Courts.

Residents described the scene as being like "something out of the Wild West".

One man said he was woken by the sound of two loud bangs.

"I heard the bangs and thought it was gunfire but wasn't sure," he said.

"It was a while later when the police turned up and put the cordon around the house up the street from me that I realised it was gunfire I'd heard.

"Later I saw the cordon at the shop and got talking to a few people up there who told me about the car being rammed.

"This is a really good place to live but the scenes here were like something out of the Wild West.

"It's only a couple of weeks ago that there was a similar attack here, which is not what you want to see in the place where you are trying to bring your family up."

Detective Inspector Stephanie Finlay described the attack as "completely reckless".

She said: "Reports were received shortly after 7am on Tuesday of a number of shots being fired in the Sevenoaks area.

"At this time we believe a silver coloured Peugeot car rammed into a black car as it drove near the entrance to Sevenoaks.

"A number of shots are then believed to have been fired at the driver of the black car who managed to leave the area and drive to a local police station. There have been no reports of any injuries.

"The silver Peugeot was abandoned and set alight at Lincoln Court a short time after the incident.

"This was a completely reckless attack carried out in a residential area and we are very lucky today that no-one has been seriously hurt or killed."

Derry and Strabane SDLP Councillor Martin Reilly said: "This was an unwanted and unnecessary disruption to those who are travelling to work and going about their day."

Foyle DUP MLA Gary Middleton said it was fortunate that no-one was killed or seriously injured.

Meanwhile, a separate security alert in Newtownabbey yesterday was declared a hoax.

A suspicious object was discovered and diversions were put in place at the junction of Arthur Bridge and Whitewell Road.

All roads in the area later reopened to traffic and residents were allowed to return to their homes.

Belfast Telegraph

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