Three arrested in Glen Quinn murder probe released on bail
Three people arrested on suspicion of the murder of a Co Antrim man beaten to death by the UDA have been released on bail.
Glen Quinn was attacked in his flat in Ashleigh Park in the Woodburn area of Carrickfergus at the weekend, a short time after clashing with a senior UDA figure from the South East Antrim unit of the terror group.
On Monday, detectives arrested a 38-year-old man on suspicion of aggravated burglary and grievous bodily harm with intent, a 39-year-old man on suspicion of aggravated burglary, and a 47-year-old woman on suspicion of grievous bodily harm with intent.
Police later re-arrested the three on suspicion of murder. All three were in custody on Monday night, while police maintained the cordon around the scene. They were later released on police bail pending further enquiries.
Following his death Mr Quinn was described as a “super fella” by those close to him.
The 47-year-old was hit by thugs with iron bars and baseball bats in a so-called ‘punishment’ beating. However, it is believed that the decision to kill Mr Quinn was not authorised by the UDA’s leadership.
Police discovered his body late on Saturday afternoon, while a post-mortem examination to discover how he died was due to be carried out yesterday.
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Detective Superintendent Jason Murphy said: “I am aware that speculation is circulating that this death is in some way related to the activities of South East Antrim UDA.
“The investigation remains at a very early stage and it is not yet possible to be definitive about the motivation for this man’s murder but the potential for it to be linked to those associated with paramilitary organisations will form part of our investigation.”
The officer added that the PSNI we will be working closely with local neighbourhood officers “to provide reassurance to the local community and to enable those who wish to speak to police to do so”.
Mr Quinn was a former barman in the town’s Royal Oak pub, where he had worked as a young man.
On Monday, a Royal Oak spokesperson said Mr Quinn had not worked in the pub for 30 years but remained close with the staff.
“He was a super fella,” he said. “He worked here from when he was a teenager to his early 20s. He was a lovely fella and his family are the same.
“We’re all very sad at what’s happened. He was brilliant and his family, too, because his mother and one of his brothers worked here. We’re all very upset about it.” Meanwhile, calls were made for the PSNI to take action against loyalist criminal gangs following Mr Quinn’s death. Ulster Unionist MLA Doug Beattie said those responsible for criminality were “sick, drug-dealing fascists”.
He added that it was “time to dismantle this paramilitary grouping through working with others equally shocked by this brutality”.
Sinn Fein councillor Oliver McMullan said: “There is shock in the community at the killing of a man in Carrickfergus.
“While an investigation is under way and must be allowed to continue, it’s been reported that this killing was ordered by the South East Antrim UDA.
“It’s long past time the PSNI finally cracked down on the criminal activity of the UDA and other loyalist paramilitaries. Those responsible for this latest killing must be brought before the courts.”
East Antrim UUP MLA John Stewart described Mr Quinn’s death as an “absolute tragedy”.
He said the community was in shock at the news of the killing.
“He has been described widely as a gentleman, a kind-hearted individual and someone who is very popular locally,” he said.
“My thoughts and indeed my sympathies are with his family and friends in what must be a really traumatic time.”
DUP councillor Billy Ashe also spoke of the shock in the East Antrim community.
“It is a decent area and people are upset,” he said
“Anyone living close to it has been inconvenienced by it over the weekend, by the police cordon, and they are concerned that something like this could happen so close to them.”