News Irish News

Monday 23 July 2018

Woman attacked with drill in potentially-homophobic attack

Railway Street Photo: Google Maps
Railway Street Photo: Google Maps
Independent.ie Newsdesk

Independent.ie Newsdesk

A woman has been assaulted with a drill after a potentially homophobic attack in Northern Ireland.

A teenage boy was arrested after a 38-year-old woman suffered a "very serious" head injury, police said.

The victim is in a critical but stable condition in hospital after the attack in County Tyrone.

A 17-year-old boy is being questioned after the incident at around 2am on Saturday morning in Railway Street in Strabane.

Police Service of Northern Ireland Detective Sergeant Brian Reid said they are looking into the possibility that the attack was homophobic and appealed to anyone with footage of a male with a cordless drill in the area at the time to contact them.

He said: "This was a brutal attack and the injuries sustained by the victim are extremely grave.

"We are exploring a possible homophobic motive for the crime and we are appealing for witnesses to get in touch with us.

"We would like to hear from anyone who may have seen a male carrying a drill in the area at around the time of the assault and we would especially like to speak to anyone who may have captured footage, either on mobile phone or dashcam."

PSDLP MLA for West Tyrone, Daniel McCrossan asked anyone with information to come forward.

"I am absolutely horrified by this assault. This kind of sickening behaviour has no place in society," he said.

"I would ask the community to give the PSNI the space they need to carry out their investigation swiftly and throughly. I would also appeal to anyone who may have information about this assault to contact crimestoppers immediately.

"My thoughts are with the victim and her family."

Detective Sergeant Brian Reid said police were exploring a "possible homophobic motive" for the attack.

“This was a brutal attack and the injuries sustained by the victim are extremely grave," he said.

"We are appealing for witnesses to get in touch with us. We would like to hear from anyone who may have  seen a male carrying a drill in the area at around the time of the assault and we would especially like to speak to anyone who may have captured footage, either on mobile phone or dashcam.

"Anyone with such footage or any other information that could assist the investigation is asked to contact police in Strabane on 101, quoting reference number 153 05/05/18."

"Alternatively, information can also be provided to the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 which is 100% anonymous and gives people the power to speak up and stop crime."

"There will be some disruption to traffic in Strabane this morning while police examine the area."

Belfast Telegraph

Editor's Choice

Also in Irish News