Belfast Telegraph

PSNI condemn attack on officers attending scene of mum's death

By Leona O'Neill

Police have slammed those behind rioting which erupted in Londonderry's Bogside as "mindless thugs" after officers were attacked while dealing with a sudden death.

PSNI officers attending the sudden death of a mother in her 40s at a house in the Rossville Street area on Monday afternoon came under attack by youths throwing stones, bottles, masonry, paint and petrol bombs.

A mob of masked youths gathered in the Fahan Street and Rossville Street areas and also erected a barrier across the bottom of the Flyover - one of the city's busiest arterial routes - and set it alight, preventing cars from passing and causing further disruption to the area.

Chief Inspector Alan Hutton said the behaviour of the youths was "not acceptable in any civilised society".

"I cannot begin to understand the thinking behind the actions of those involved in this despicable behaviour," he said.

"They showed total disrespect for a grieving family at this sad time.

"The family of the deceased deserve the respect of the whole community to pay quiet reflection to their loved one. They were denied this right last night by the actions of these mindless thugs.

"I would ask those responsible: 'How would you feel if a member of your family had just died and a wanton crowd decided it was a 'good time' to attack the police?'

"This behaviour is not acceptable in any civilised society.

"I totally condemn the actions of those involved and I would appeal to anyone within the community who has any information about this incident to contact police at Strand Road on the non-emergency number 101, quoting reference number 1504 28/05/18. Alternatively, information can also be provided to the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111, which is 100% anonymous and gives people the power to speak up and stop crime."

Sinn Fein councillor Patricia Logue said the actions of the youths "only added to the grief of the woman's family".

"A number of youths caused disruption and anti-social behaviour in the surrounding area," she said.

"This is only adding to the grief and shock felt by residents.

"I would make a call for calm and appeal to parents to make it their business to ensure their children are not getting caught up in this type of activity.

"Even during the worst days of the conflict, people in the community always let the police go about their job of investigation during incidents such as this."

Belfast Telegraph

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