Detectives are investigating a report of arson at residential premises at the Leckagh Walk area of Magherafelt this morning (Friday 19th October).
Detective Constable Dunlop said: “Shortly before 3:20am, it was reported that a tyre was placed against the front door of a house in the area. The tyre was set alight, which resulted in extensive damage to the door and caused scorch damage to the hallway. An upstairs bedroom received scorch and smoke damage as a result of the incident. Northern Ireland Fire & Rescue Service attended the scene and extinguished the fire.
“Two men aged 47 and 17 years old and a woman aged 39 years old were inside the property during the incident, but were not injured. A 5 year old child was asleep in an adjacent bedroom to the bedroom damaged as a result of the fire, but she was not injured.
“Enquiries are continuing but at this stage, police are treating the incident as a hate crime.
“This totally reckless act could have resulted in injuries or fatalities. We are appealing to anyone who witnessed anything suspicious in the area to contact detectives on 101, quoting reference number 142 19/10/18. 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.”
The Police Service of Northern Ireland is appealing for anyone who witnessed the incident or anyone with any information that will assist the investigation to contact us on the non-emergency number 101. Information can also be passed anonymously via the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.