Belfast Telegraph

Outrage over two attacks by gunmen in space of hour in Derry

By Donna Deeney

Two gun attacks in Londonderry have been met with anger and calls for those responsible to be taken off the streets.

On Thursday night a man in his 60s was ordered to lie on the floor of his home in Ballymagroarty before being shot in the leg.

Less than an hour later shots were fired at a home in the Rossnagalliagh area of Derry, where a family of five had just retired to bed.

Police believe dissident republican paramilitaries are behind the punishment-style shooting in Ballymagroarty, but are not linking this with the incident in Rossnagalliagh.

People in both areas were shocked at the violence on their streets.

One man from Ballymagroarty, who knows the victim but did not want to be named, said: "There is no way that man did anything to deserve that.

"That's a gang of wee thugs with guns who have this place terrorised.

"No one should be treated like that, but especially a man that age who has lived here for years and who has done nothing wrong."

Local Sinn Fein councillor Eric McGinley said that the whole community is outraged by the attack.

Detective Inspector Stephanie Finlay described this shooting as "brutal".

She said: "We received a report that a group of young males with their faces covered knocked at the door of a house and forced a man to lie down on the ground before firing a shot at him.

"The man was shot in the left leg, but the bullet passed through and also grazed the back of his right leg. He was treated for his injuries in hospital.

"This was a brutal attack and yet another example of how criminal groups seek to control communities through fear and violence."

Meanwhile, in Rossnagalliagh the family targeted in the second shooting were too shocked to speak to the media.

However, SDLP councillor Brian Tierney said the attack has struck fear into people.

Detective Inspector Finlay said: "We received this report just after 12.20am. Five people - a man, a woman and three children - were in the house at the time. Although none of them was injured, they were left shocked by what happened.

"Damage was caused to a vehicle parked outside the property and the living room window was smashed during the incident."

Police have urged anyone with information about the attack to contact them on 101.

Belfast Telegraph

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