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Police search for hooded man after 'brutal' Robbie Lawlor killing


Murdered: Robbie Lawlor

Murdered: Robbie Lawlor

Murdered: Robbie Lawlor

Police have said they want to speak to a hooded man who was seen in Ardoyne shortly before Robbie Lawlor was murdered a week and a half ago.

Detectives from the PSNI’s Major Investigation Team investigating the murder of Robbie Lawlor in North Belfast on April 4 have appealed for information about a hooded man who was seen close to the scene of the murder in Ardoyne.

Mr Lawlor was shot dead outside a house in Etna Drive in what police have described as a "brutal" killing that took place in broad daylight at 11.50am.

It's believed the 36-year-old, originally from Dublin, was staying in Belfast since the start of March to avoid revenge attacks for his role in the horrific January killing and dismembering of Drogheda teenager Keane Mulready-Woods.

He was also well-known to Gardai for his participation in serious and organised crime.

Speaking on Wednesday, Detective Chief Inspector Peter Montgomery said: " I have received reports of a person, wearing a black jacket with the hood up, carrying a holdall while walking along Jamaica Way towards Old Park."

He called for the person in question to step forward so they can be eliminated from police enquiries and for anyone who noticed someone of that description to also come forward.

Detective Chief Inspector Montgomery said he is also appealing for witnesses to the murder of Mr Lawlor and also anyone who witnessed a silver Volkswagen Scirocco with registration YLZ 7052 being burnt out in Kingston Court shortly after the shooting.

"I believe it was brought from Newry on March 31 and taken into the Ardoyne that evening. It was parked in Estoril Park in Ardoyne the day before the murder, on Friday April 3 at 10am. I know it was stolen in the Republic of Ireland on January 30th. I still want to hear from anyone who saw it or witnessed its movements between March 31st and Friday, April 3rd in Estoril Park until it was found burnt out on Saturday 4th at approximately midday in Kingston Court.

"I would ask anyone who drove along the Crumlin Road on March 31st between 7.30pm and 7.40pm to check if they have dashcam footage for that journey and if so to contact the incident room."

Police believe a single gunman was involved in the killing who fired at the victim and struck him multiple times. The murder weapon has not yet been recovered.

"While I would like to thank those who have come forward with information so far, I know there are people living in Ardoyne who have not yet come forward to police with information.

"I understand that people may be frightened to talk to us but I will ensure anyone’s anonymity for the purpose of this investigation," he said.

"If anyone in the area captured any footage of the incident please make that available to us also. It can be uploaded on the Major Incident Public Portal at https://mipp.police.uk/operation/PSNI20P04-PO1.

"And information can be provided to police on 101, the incident room on 02890 2595422, or anonymously through the Crime Stoppers charity on 0800 555 111."

Belfast Telegraph