Belfast Telegraph

Six officers are arrested after 'hate crime' attack outside seaside pub

By Cate McCurry

Six police officers have been arrested after three people were attacked outside a seaside pub in Co Londonderry.

The victims required hospital treatment for injuries sustained in the altercation in Portstewart early on Wednesday.

With two of the people injured being foreign nations, police are investigating if the incident was a hate crime.

Eight people arrested over the incident been bailed pending further inquiries. Six of those are police officers who were off-duty at the time.

Chief Superintendent Garry Eaton said: "This investigation is still at the early stages, and we are following a number of lines of enquiry, including reviewing CCTV footage and identifying and speaking to witnesses.

"I would encourage anyone who was in the area of Church Pass in Portstewart during the early hours of Wednesday and witnessed the altercation to contact detectives in Coleraine.

"The discipline branch is also conducting an internal investigation and therefore it would not be appropriate for me to comment further.

"However, what I can say is that the Police Service of Northern Ireland expects its officers and staff to behave professionally, ethically and with the utmost integrity at all times.

"Any deviation from those standards is unacceptable, and we are committed to ensuring that where officers and staff fail to maintain the high standards expected of them, they are dealt with appropriately."

It is understood the duty status of the officers involved is currently under review.

A spokesman for the Police Ombudsman's office said: "We were informed by the police about the incident, but because the officers were off-duty at the time, the case does not fall within the remit of the office to investigate."

Anyone who can assist with the investigation is asked to contact detectives in Coleraine on the non-emergency number 101.

Belfast Telegraph


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