Friday 24 January 2020

Shooting linked to bare-knuckle fight

Gardai search for bullet casings outside the house in Drogheda where 15 shots were fired as children slept inside.
Gardai search for bullet casings outside the house in Drogheda where 15 shots were fired as children slept inside.

Louise Hogan and Tom Brady

A father of five whose wife narrowly escaped death when their home was riddled with at least 15 bullets has linked the attack to a bare-knuckle fight seven years ago.

Standing outside his house in Knockbrack Close, Drogheda, Co Louth, Chris Maguire said he knew the identity of the gunman and branded him a "coward".

Gardai believe the shooting is connected to an internal row in the Travelling community.

Five children aged from eight months to six years were in the house with two women aged 25 and 18.

"It is disgraceful for a man to go and do this," said Mr Maguire. "He is a pure coward."

Mr Maguire told how one bullet grazed his wife Annemarie's back as she bent over to tend to their eight-month-old baby and another shot narrowly missed his brother's wife.

He added: "There were children in every room. Most of the bullets were directed into the sitting room where my baby could have easily been hit.

"My wife bent over and the bullet clipped her across the back."

Gardai said the internal row had been going on for several years. Officers believe the gunman and accomplices made their getaway in a grey Kia Cee'd found on fire about 3km away in Platin, Co Meath.

Mr Maguire said he believed he knew who was responsible for the attack, and added: "If he wanted to get me, he could have got me down the road somewhere. It is disgraceful."

He also said he had been threatened by another man two weeks ago.

"I had a gun straight to my face," he said. "I had my child in the sitting room. I'd to bring the child outside so they would not be hurt. This fellow has no remorse for things like this."

Mr Maguire said he had no intention of retaliating, adding that he was "not that type of man".

"If I got beat, I would never have done anything, but I won (the fight) on the day and he couldn't live with it," he said.

Neighbours took care of the five children while Mrs Maguire was treated for shock.

Another neighbour said: "We heard bangs and shots and at first thought it was fireworks."

Irish Independent

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