28/10/2004

Police link hostage incident to attack on police station

Police have linked a gun attack on a police station on Wednesday night with a hostage incident in Co Antrim.

A van used in the shooting of Randalstown PSNI station on Wednesday evening is believed to have been the vehicle stolen earlier in the evening from a family who were held hostage by a gang of men at a house in Craigstown Road in the town.

Up to five masked men burst into the house at about 8pm and demanded keys to a van owned by the family.

The family, which included several children, were locked in a room while some of the men left before returning at around 11.30pm and leaving with the remainder of the gang.

In between this time four shots were fired and hit the front gate of Randalstown PSNI station at about 10pm. The vehicle that was used in the incident was later found burnt out in the town's Creggan Road a short time later.

Police have appealed for anyone who witnessed a white van on New Street or Creggan Road between 10pm and 11pm to contact them.

(MB/GMCG)

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