Pipe Bomb Attack, Melmount Villas, Strabane

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Police are appealing for information after a viable pipe bomb was thrown through the window of a property in Strabane.

The device was thrown through the bedroom window of the house in Melmount Villas on Sunday evening where a female, aged in her 60s, was sleeping. The device was removed by another person and thrown into a nearby hedge. The female was uninjured.

Chief Inspector Alan Hutton said the incident is being treated as attempted murder.

He said: "There can be no justification whatsoever for a bomb being thrown through anyone’s window, let alone a vulnerable lady’s house. This is stooping to new low and I feel for the lady today, when she thinks through what could have happened. Thankfully, it didn’t explode, or we could have been looking at something very different today."

The incident was reported to police at approximately 8:50pm last night, Monday, 8 August, and the device was made safe by Army Technical Officers and recovered by police for further examination.

Chief Inspector Hutton said: "I will fairly and squarely point the finger at violent dissident republicans and I know there are people of all shades who will condemn this act.

“This was a reckless attack on the local community which could have caused serious harm. Those who threw this device have clearly no regard for the people living here. This is a very small minority of people in Northern Ireland who have carried out this attack and I am appealing for the community's support in identifying the perpetrators and bringing them to justice.”

Police are appealing to anyone who may have witnessed any suspicious activity in the area to contact Detectives at Strand Road Criminal Investigation Branch, by calling 101 and quoting reference 1314 07/08/17 or, if they wish to remain anonymous call the Crimestoppers charity anonymously on 0800 555 111.”