An innocent family has told of their terror when a shotgun was fired at their front door in the dead of night.
Gardai are probing whether the family were victims of mistaken identity as a bitter feud in the locality has led to a number of tit-for-tat incidents, including shootings and pipebomb attacks.
Armed garda patrols will now be stepped up in Swords, north Dublin as the situation threatens to spiral out of control.
Kathleen Joyce (38), her husband and ten-year-old son were all asleep in their home in Lissenhall Green, Swords, when a gunman shot at their home at around 2.45am yesterday.
Sources revealed that an old Ford Mondeo car with two occupants was seen speeding from the estate shortly after the shooting.
Speaking to the Herald as her husband cleaned up the shattered glass from the front door, Kathleen said she has no idea why anyone would want to target her family.
The pellets from the shotgun cartridge could be seen embedded in the wooden door and one of the double-glazed panels was smashed.
"We have no idea who did this or what for. We are in total shock that anyone would do this to us," said Kathleen.
"We were all asleep when suddenly there was a massive bang. I don't know if it was the noise of the gun or the shot hitting the door that woke us, but it was frightening."
"This was a cowardly act, and whoever did it did not care if they caused injury or death," she explained. If they can shoot at an innocent family then they are capable of anything."
Kathleen said the shooting had to be a case of mistaken identity.
"We have been living here for 14 years, but they must have the wrong house," she said.
"None of us are in any trouble or feud or anything like that. This is a quiet place," she added.