Derry Victim's Family 'Thankful For Support'

The family of the man murdered in Londonderry yesterday have been expressing their gratitude for the support they have received.

While another man remains in a critical condition following the vicious attack in the early hours of yesterday morning, the victim of the Sunday attack was named as Paddy Harkin.

The badly injured man was transferred to Belfast's Royal Victoria Hospital where he is understood to be suffering from serious head injuries and the area around Bayview Terrace and Asylum Road close to Strand Road police station was closed for a period of time yesterday as forensic experts investigated.

The PSNI said that one man has been arrested and is assisting police with their inquiries today as the dead man's family went public by making a statement on their sorrow.

"We the family of Paddy Harkin who was brutally murdered on Saturday night would like to take this opportunity to thank all those who have supported us over the last few days.

"It is impossible to articulate the pain and trauma that we as a family are experiencing at this particular time," a statement said on Monday afternoon.

"We would also like to offer our best wishes to Paddy's friend who also suffered horrendous injuries in the incident which cost Paddy his life. He and his family are constantly in our thoughts. We hope and pray that he makes a full recovery.

"Paddy was a beautiful individual who worked and lived to provide the best life he could for his son Sean.
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"Sean would spend much of his time with Paddy in his flat and only that he was attending a party on Saturday he would have been present in the flat at the time of this attack. We fear to contemplate what could have been if Sean had been present.

"We also appreciate the adherence of most of the media who respected our request for privacy over the last couple of days as we attempted to come to terms with our terrible loss."

Meanwhile, the Derry-based Deputy First Minister Mr McGuinness, who knew Mr Harkin, released a statement in which he said: "I know Paddy and I must say he was a very inoffensive man and I was shocked and saddened this morning when I was told of his tragic death.

"While I understand that there is a person in custody in connection with the murder and assault I nonetheless would encourage anyone with any information about this incident to come forward.

"Paddy's wife, son, brothers and sisters and extended family and friends are in my thoughts and prayers at this troublesome time," he commented.

SDLP MLA Pat Ramsay said people in the city were shocked at what had happened: "This is an awful tragedy that the people in this city are trying to come to terms with.

"I do understood the second person is very unwell at this time and our prayers are with him that he can make a full recovery."


In another, unconnected incident, a 26-year-old man has been arrested following a stabbing in the Clondara Street area of west Belfast during the early hours of Monday morning.

It's understood the victim sustained three puncture wounds to the chest and one to the head during the incident, which was reported at around 1.15am.

The arrested person was detained in Brooke Crescent a short time later.

The PSNI said that initial enquiries suggest the stabbing occurred in the street and not inside a property.

Investigating officers are appealing for witnesses. They can be contacted by calling 0845 600 8000.


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