Belfast Telegraph

PSNI probe display of ‘donuting’ at funeral of man killed in crash

Mourners at the funeral of Alaedin Fejzula in Dungannon yesterday
Mourners at the funeral of Alaedin Fejzula in Dungannon yesterday
Mourners at the funeral of Alaedin Fejzula in Dungannon yesterday
Cars performing stunts outside the church
Cars performing stunts outside the church
Mark Bain

By Mark Bain

Police are investigating an incident in which cars performed "donuts" yesterday at the funeral of a man killed in a road crash.

As mourners filed out of St Patrick's Church in Dungannon following the funeral Mass for Slovakian-born Alaedin Fejzula, three BMW cars appeared and began revving their engines.

The vehicles then "drifted" for 10 minutes, with several men in yellow vests stopping traffic as the cars performed an apparent tribute to the 21-year-old, who was killed on the A29 Dungannon Road outside Moy last Sunday afternoon.

Mr Fejzula died along with childhood friend Patrick Kemenczei.

A third person, Brigid McKenna from Emyvale in Co Monaghan, died as a result of her injuries on Tuesday.

Two people remain in hospital following the three-car collision.

The three BMW cars at the funeral were said to have performed donuts outside the church gates.

Mid Ulster Sinn Fein MP Francie Molloy said mourners were left "shocked" at the display.

The incident left a smell of burnt rubber in the air as the cortege moved off, and the politician said many who had gathered to pay their respects were insulted by the "scandal", which, he added, "glorified speed".

He said: "People were shocked at the behaviour outside the chapel. They (the cars) were doing donuts round and round at the chapel gates and had closed off all three roads.

"People in high-vis vests stood at the junctions to Killyman and Circular Roads and Northland Row while cars drifted in the small area for around 10 minutes before a police car arrived."

At one stage during the display the victim's distraught mother Gabriela Sozanska was led away in tears, and the cars drove off at speed after someone alerted them to police presence.

Fr Cathal Devenney, who conducted the funeral Mass, said he was aware of the incident but had not known it was planned.

"I really don't know anything other than the fact that it happened," he told the Belfast Telegraph. "I didn't even see them as I was already back in the church when it occurred."

The PSNI said enquiries are ongoing. "Police are aware of reports of anti-social driving in the vicinity of St Patrick's Church, Dungannon, this morning," police said.

More than 300 family and friends of the Slovakian, who had made his home here, turned out to pay tribute at his funeral Mass.

At the service Fr Devenney spoke of the community's shock at Mr Fejzula's death.

"There are no words to express the sorrow of a mother who has lost her child at any time, particularly at a time of great tragedy," he told mourners.

A tribute was read out in Mr Fejzula's native Slovakian by a friend.

The only child of Gabriela Sozanska and stepson of Ervin Mindzak, Mr Fejzula lived at Derrycaw Road in Dungannon.

He worked as a mechanic in his adopted home town along with his best friend Mr Kemenczei, also from Slovakia.

The remains of Mr Kemenczei, who had no relatives locally, are to be flown home to Slovakia for burial.

Tom Sullivan, honorary consul for Slovakia, said the embassy in London has been in contact with the families and will be providing assistance.

PSNI Inspector Andrew Archibald appealed for anyone who was travelling on the Dungannon Road in Moy on Sunday, and who witnessed the collision or any of the vehicles involved, to contact police on 101, quoting reference 699 03/02/19

Belfast Telegraph


From Belfast Telegraph