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Man arrested on suspicion of murder over Ballymena death

A senior police officer said detectives will continue to have a presence on the estate where Victor Hamilton died.

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Detectives have arrested a man on suspicion of murder after the death of Victor Hamilton in Ballymena (PSNI/PA)

Detectives have arrested a man on suspicion of murder after the death of Victor Hamilton in Ballymena (PSNI/PA)

Detectives have arrested a man on suspicion of murder after the death of Victor Hamilton in Ballymena (PSNI/PA)

Detectives investigating the death of a man in Ballymena have arrested a 29-year-old on suspicion of murder.

The body of Victor Hamilton was discovered in Orkney Drive in the Co Antrim town on Wednesday morning.

Police confirmed the 63-year-old was found dead in the driveway of his home.

Detective Chief Inspector Neil McGuinness, of the PSNI, said: “The man was arrested just after 11.30am this morning in the Spring Meadows area of Armagh.

“He is currently being questioned in the serious crime suite at Musgrave police station in Belfast.

“While our investigation is ongoing, I would still urge anyone with information or anyone who was in the Orkney Drive area of Ballymena on Tuesday night into the early hours of Wednesday morning to contact detectives on 101, quoting reference 273 of July 27.

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“I’d like to thank the local community in the Orkney Drive and surrounding area for their ongoing support.

“I also want to reassure the community that detectives will continue to have a presence in the area alongside local policing colleagues as our investigation continues.”

Police and forensic officers were on the estate throughout Wednesday and Thursday and a white forensic tent was erected at the front of Mr Hamilton’s property.

The Mayor of Mid and East Antrim, Noel Williams, expressed his condolences.

He said: “I am deeply shocked and saddened to hear of the tragic death of Victor Hamilton in Ballymena.

“My thoughts are with his family and friends, and I wish everyone connected with Victor strength and comfort at this difficult time.

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Forensic investigators at the scene in Orkney Drive in Ballymena (Liam McBurney/PA)

Forensic investigators at the scene in Orkney Drive in Ballymena (Liam McBurney/PA)

PA

Forensic investigators at the scene in Orkney Drive in Ballymena (Liam McBurney/PA)

“I appeal for anybody with any information regarding this sad loss of life to contact the PSNI.”

A vigil in memory of Mr Hamilton took place on Thursday evening. It will leave the Ballykeel Pentecostal Church and walk towards his home.

Pastor Thomas Todd, from the church, said: “I didn’t really know the victim, I would probably have said hello to him on a couple of occasions.

“He had been in the area for a while, but I don’t know when he arrived into the estate.

“There is shock in the estate and disbelief.

“Ballykeel is like any estate, a lot of people who are close-knit who watch out for each other.

“To have something like this happen, it leaves people with a lot of questions.”

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A police sign at the cordon in place around the scene (Liam McBurney/PA)

A police sign at the cordon in place around the scene (Liam McBurney/PA)

PA

A police sign at the cordon in place around the scene (Liam McBurney/PA)

Ballymena SDLP councillor Eugene Reid said local people are shocked at the news.

“Obviously the gentleman involved is known to them and they are upset that this has happened,” he told the BBC.

“It is a tragedy and it’s something that we never want to see happening.

“We would encourage anyone with information to bring that to the PSNI to ensure they can come to some conclusion in regards to this tragic event.”


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