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Probe into PSNI officers' conduct after shots fired at Dunmurry house party

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Probe: Marie Anderson

Probe: Marie Anderson

Probe: Marie Anderson

A probe into the conduct of two off-duty police officers - who were charged after shots were fired at a house party - must apply strict scrutiny, a former PSNI chief has insisted.

Former Assistant Chief Constable Alan McQuillan was speaking after the rookie officers were arrested last Sunday following a party at a property in Dunmurry, on the outskirts of Belfast at the weekend.

The two officers, who were not on duty at the time, are due to appear at Lisburn Magistrates' Court on July 2. They have been charged with a number of firearm offences, the PSNI said in a statement.

The incident has been reported to the Police Ombudsman Marie Anderson, who investigates all weapon discharges by PSNI officers.

It is understood they had only recently graduated from the PSNI training college, BBC NI reported yesterday.

It was also claimed three other off-duty officers have been spoken to about breaching lockdown regulations.

Last night Mr McQuillan said if the incident is true, "then it's a very stupid thing to do" and said "the strictest attention" needs to be paid to what happened.

"It is absolutely right that it be investigated and dealt with," he said.

"The question is - are these people fit to hold firearms? And if they're not fit to hold firearms, then they shouldn't be police officers."

Policing Board member and South Antrim Alliance MLA John Blair said the matter must also be scrutinised by the PSNI watchdog.

"I'm aware that the appropriate investigations are currently under way," said Mr Blair.

"And I would expect a report on the incident to be brought to the Policing Board at the earliest opportunity. I understand that it has been reported to the Police Ombudsman as well, and therefore, in addition to that, I would expect some briefing on the incident to be brought to the Policing Board."

Belfast Telegraph