Mum and baby in firing line in gun attack

By David Whelan

A LONE gunman opened fire on a mother and her baby during a terrifying attack on a house in Ardoyne last night (Wednesday).

The woman, believed to be in her thirties, opened the door carrying her baby after an attack on the household’s car, thought to have been carried out in a bid to lure the man from the house.

Another two young children under the age of ten and the woman’s husband were also in the house in Velsheda Court when the attack was carried out at around 10pm.

Residents in the area told the North Belfast News they heard the smash of glass and then three loud bangs.

“It happened very quickly and the first thing I heard was [the woman] saying ‘they tried to kill me and the child’,” said a neighbour.

“I think her husband must have pushed her out of the way, it’s a wonder no one was killed.

“The little boy isn’t even a year old and the two girls are only about nine and six.”

After the shots were fired the gun man fled through an alleyway to Cranbrook Court, where he is believed to have made off in a white car.

Police confirmed that no one was injured in the attack but said the family had been left badly shaken.

This morning (Thursday), no one was in the property but glass from the broken front door lay close to children’s bikes and scooters.

A bullet hole, which had pierced a window at the front of the house, was also evident.

Another neighbour said that the young family had lived in the premises for less than a year and that this was the first incident of any trouble.

He said that a family member had taken the children away after the incident but that police had remained in the area until after 3am.

Sinn Féin Cllr Gerry McCabe slammed the attack as unacceptable.

“The gang that launched this gun attack on an Ardoyne family with three children last night have no place in this community,” he said.

“This incident was totally unacceptable and must be condemned in the strongest possible terms. Details are emerging this morning of the nature of this incident which also included the gang damaging a car at the scene when they couldn’t gain entry to this dwelling.

“I’d urge anyone with any information to bring that forward urgently.”

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