Belfast Telegraph

Jamaican family 'traumatised' as Rathcoole home attacked for second time by racist thugs

By Adrian Rutherford

A Jamaican woman has said she will leave her home after it was attacked for the second time in less than a year by racist thugs.

Kerry Ann Brown said she no longer feels safe after a brick was hurled through her front window early this morning.

Her three children – aged 10, seven and two – were also left terrified by the attack, which police are treating as a hate crime.

It came 10 months after she had racist graffiti scrawled on her front door.

Ms Brown said she wants to leave the property at Linford Green, which is situated in the sprawling Rathcoole estate in Newtownabbey.

“I am hoping to move out,” she told the Belfast Telegraph.

“Messages have been painted on my door, my windows have now been broken – my concern is what will happen next.

“It is a very traumatic experience – I wouldn’t wish it on anyone.”

Ms Brown, who is originally from Jamaica, has lived in Northern Ireland since July 2002, and moved to Rathcoole last June.

However, within weeks of moving her home was daubed with racist graffiti.

“Last year they wrote ‘blacks out’ and some other garbage on my door,” she added.

“My house is the only one in the street which has been attacked – I can only assume it’s because I’m black.”

The latest incident took place shortly after 2am this morning, when Ms Brown and her three children were asleep.

She recalled how she was left terrified after waking to the sound of breaking glass.

“It was just after 2am when I heard this loud bang, then there was the sound of glass shattering,” she added.

“I thought someone had entered the property.

“I was on the phone to the police and they told me not to go downstairs, but to secure myself and my children.

“I was frightened, stressed, panicked.

“It is a frightening experience for the children.”

Ms Brown’s neighbours have been angered by the attack.

One said it did not represent the vast majority of people living in the Rathcoole estate.

Several neighbours called at Ms Brown’s home today to offer their help and support.

UUP Mayor Fraser Agnew also spoke of his disgust after visiting the family.

Mr Agnew said he was trying to get the family re-homed.

“This family just wants to be part of the community but there is a small minority who will not accept that,” he said.

“Their actions are just plain stupid.”

Alliance councillor Billy Webb said the attack was completely unacceptable.

“We must take action to combat the recent spate of racist attacks,” he said.

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