Mum 'feared for family' in Antrim attack

Published Tuesday, 19 February 2013
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A mother-of-two has told UTV how she had to lift her sleeping children out of their beds to safety, after an armed gang raided her Antrim home.

Mum 'feared for family' in Antrim attack
Two people have been arrested on suspicion of burglary. (© Pacemaker)

Three properties in the Greystone estate were damaged during a spate of attacks on Monday evening. A man and a teenage girl are being questioned about the incidents.

A group carrying machetes and hammers tried to force their way into the home Lisa shares with her four-year-old twins.

The gang smashed the kitchen and living room windows, before kicking the front door open at around 9pm on Monday. They then ransacked the house, wrecking laptops and televisions and also stealing a mobile phone.

"I was fearing for my kids' lives. The only thing going through my head was to protect my kids," Lisa told UTV, describing the scene as "mayhem".

"I had to lift my children out of their beds, into the freezing cold, to bring them to their grandmother's house to safety."

A 35-year-old man was assaulted and received injuries to his hand.

Shortly after 10pm, a group of people tried to break into an upstairs flat nearby. Just minutes later, a third property, believed to be empty, was deliberately set on fire.

A Fire and Rescue Service spokesperson said that an aerial appliance had to be used, as the extensive blaze meant the roof was unsafe for crews to access. The fire also caused smoke damage to the house next door.

I'm scared in case they do go back, but I have to go back. It's my home for me and my kids. There's nothing else I can do.

Lisa

The series of attacks comes after a suspected arson attack in the Ballycraigy Estate in the early hours of Monday morning, in which two boats outside a home in Craigshill were destroyed.

Lisa said the attacks have damaged the neighbourhoods within the Firmount estate.

"Everybody was once a community and pulled together," she explained. "But it divided a wedge between the whole community.

"Last night, everybody came and stood together out my back to show them that we are not going to take it anymore.

"We just want to live and bring our kids up."

A 44-year-old man is being questioned on suspicion of aggravated burglary, resisting arrest, disorderly behaviour and assaulting police.

A 16-year-old girl was arrested on Ballycraigy Road early on Tuesday morning, also on suspicion of aggravated burglary in connection with the incident.

Police say investigations are at an early stage and that officers are working to establish the circumstances surrounding the attacks.

They are appealing for anyone with information that could assist the investigation to contact them.

Antrim DUP Mayor Roy Thompson said it was lucky that no one was injured during the incidents.

"Thankfully, we are not looking at fatalities this morning," he said. "Thankfully, the house that was attacked, in the main attack, it was empty at the time and has burnt to a shell."

He added: "I unreservedly condemn such incidents in any part of Antrim."

© UTV News
Comments Comments
5 Comments
kev in x Antrim wrote (609 days ago):
I lived in Antrim for 26 years and moved out a few months ago after being attacked for the third time in 4 years.I was beaten in my flat in 2009,2010 which left me with a broken ankle in 2010 and had two operations to repair the ankle,I had my windows broken every weekend and the police done nothing and i did speak out and name those involved which resulted in no arrests.People in Antrim are afraid to speak out and i understand why after my ordeals.The last and third time i was beaten they were caught and charged with attempted murder last year as cctv showed it all.My thoughts go out too all those family's in Antrim who have been attacked especially the women and children god bless them all.......
Parent in Antrim wrote (609 days ago):
I think its comical how politicians can stand and have an opinion on the attacks that happen in Greystone... When have Mr Roy Thompson knocked on anyones doors and asked them how they are? or matter of fact took an interest in Greystone itself..
frank in usa wrote (610 days ago):
wat a joke!! get a job instead off maken peoples lifes hell. they say antrim fell from belfast!! they whernt wrong
jim in firmount drive antrim wrote (610 days ago):
i live in firmount drive this place is hell to live in am not in the best of health i have to barracade my self in my own home at nights this firmount drive is got to be one of the worse places to live in northern ireland its dirty the people here are so rude no one cares about here.am scared to go out as there have been a spade of break ins to peoples homes i have lived in antrim for 25 yrs left it 6 years ago wish i had never came back here.living here makes me sick.to be honest.i feel sorry for the kids having to grow up here they run around drunk smashing windows there parents dont give a dam it should be the parents that should keep them under control to many drunks and the police do nothing but put leavelets threw letter box i would say there be alot of people moving including me.
norman.d in bangor wrote (611 days ago):
they say crime is falling who are they kidding it seems to be rising all we hear is break ins and anti social behaveiour on the streets and the police have lost control of the streets these criminals just laugh at the justice system
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