Detectives investigating a serious incident in Derry/Londonderry on Friday night (21st May) during which masked men fired shots in a residential area of the city are appealing for witnesses and information.
The incident involving at least 12 masked men who had gathered in Ardfoyle, just off Bishop Street, was reported to police just before 9pm on Friday. Police subsequently became aware of video footage circulating on social media showing masked men firing shots into the air.
Derry City & Strabane Area Commander, Chief Superintendent Darrin Jones said: "An investigation is underway to establish who is responsible for this brazen armed show of strength that was carried out when it was still light outside, and in front of a significant crowd of people, including young children.
"The fact this occurred in the middle of a built-up area is even more shocking because any of the bullets fired could have ricocheted or strayed at any moment and into the nearby crowd, among which young children were present.
"It is extremely worrying these masked gunmen thought it was acceptable to carry out this reckless act and it illustrates the contempt they have for people in their community.
“What occurred was utterly appalling and has no place in today's society, nor is there any justification for such scenes.
"Our officers have been in the Ardfoyle area conducting enquiries today, and I am appealing to anyone who can assist our investigation to get in touch. In particular, we want to hear from anyone who witnessed what occurred.
"Did you see the masked men in the area? Did you see how did they got there? Did you see how they left? Do you know who organised the event? Do you know what vehicles were in the area on Friday night and have you any CCTV, or do you know of any in the area? Did you capture what occurred on dash cam, or on your mobile phone?
"If you have information, I would urge you to get in touch with us and tell us what you know. The number to call is 101, quoting reference number 1969 of 21/05/21."
A report can also be made online using our non-emergency reporting form via http://www.psni.police.uk/makeareport/You can also contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or online at http://crimestoppers-uk.org/
Chief Superintendent Darrin Jones added: "The sight of armed and masked men on the streets of Derry/Londonderry is unacceptable. The recklessness of discharging firearms in a crowded residential area with young children actually present is beyond belief.
"That such actions would be applauded by onlookers is also deeply concerning.
“However, the public can be assured we will continue to work with communities and our partners in the Paramilitary Crime Task Force to disrupt those involved in such criminal activities and reduce the harm they cause in our communities."