Belfast Telegraph

Masked burglars break Larne man's arm with hammer and pick-axe handles during 'callous and brutal attack'

By Amanda Ferguson

A man's arm is broken and his legs are bruised following a hammer attack in Larne last night.

A police spokesman said detectives are appealing for information following an aggravated burglary in the Bay Road area of the town.

Shortly after 11.40pm on Wednesday police received a report that three masked men had forced their way into a house and assaulted a 43-year-old man with a hammer and pick-axe handles.

The man was taken to hospital for treatment for a suspected broken arm and bruising to his legs.

A woman who was also in the house at the time was not injured.

Alliance East Antrim MLA, Stewart Dickson,  said: “I am shocked at this callous and brutal attack on a man in his own home.

"Nobody should be subjected to such an assault.

“This must have been a very traumatic incident for the people in the house at the time of the attack. My thoughts go out to them.

“The people responsible are obviously very dangerous individuals who must be urgently apprehended by the Police.

"If anybody has any information about this attack then I would urge them to contact the Police.”

Detective Constable Chris Campbell also appealed for anyone who witnessed the incident or who has any information which may assist officers to identify the suspects to contact CID at Larne Police Station on the non-emergency number 101.

Information can also be passed anonymously through Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.

Meanwhile, Sinn Fein MLA Oliver McMullan called for additional police resources for Larne "to tackle loyalist criminal gangs". 

"This latest incident where a man was beaten with hammers and pick axe handles in the Bay Road area of Larne must be condemned," he said.

"This fact this happened in a quiet area highlights the problem in Larne where the absence of policing is being exploited by loyalist gangs and their criminal cohorts. 

"Previously the PSNI had a quick response team located in Larne but they withdrew it and relocated it to cover Ballymena and Coleraine. 

"The PSNI need to reinstate this team to Larne and target resources at the loyalist criminal gangs who are behind the vast majority of crime in the area. 

"I am calling on the PSNI’s Chief Constable to review policing resources in Larne and to seriously tackle the criminals who are holding the town to ransom."

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