herald

Thursday 17 August 2017

Little girl (6) witnesses second shooting terror for girl (6)

Gardai investigate a shooting of a man on the Ballyfermot Road in Dublin
Gardai investigate a shooting of a man on the Ballyfermot Road in Dublin

A SIX-YEAR-OLD girl who saw her father being shot in Ballyfermot on Friday night also witnessed the shooting of schoolboy Sean Scully last June, her family have said.

The girl has been left traumatised after a gunman opened fire on her dad, Stephen Smith, as he was getting onto his moped at Cleggan Road at 8.40pm. Mr Smith, who is in his late 30s and from Oranmore Road, tried to flee the scene and get his daughter to safety but was so badly injured and bleeding profusely that he came off the bike as the gunman made his escape.

He was rushed to St James's Hospital where he was still being treated last night.

"His poor girl, she's in an awful state over it. It's the second time she's witnessed something like this," said a close relative.

"She was at the green last year when the little Scully lad was shot, he's been left paralysed since," he added.

Sean Scully (7, right)had been playing with friends yards from his house on Croftwood Grove, just 300m from where Mr Smith was shot, when a gunman opened fire at another man but missed him - hitting Sean in the back.

He was rushed to Our Lady's Hospital for Children in Crumlin where he underwent emergency surgery, but the damage done by the bullet proved permanent.

The St Ultan's junior school pupil is now wheelchair-bound after being paralysed from the chest down.

He was only recently allowed home where he is now adapting to his new circumstances with the help of his family.

"It's disgraceful to think that anybody would open fire on someone knowing there's a child so close, and I'm sure they were out to murder Stephen," Mr Smith's relative said.

"The bullet went clean through his leg and another one hit him in the side too," he added.

"They wanted to kill him, they were high velocity bullets, and it's a miracle that his little girl wasn't hit as well," he added.

Witnesses reported seeing the gunman throw the gun away before picking it up again and fleeing on a bicycle.

In a follow-up operation a 40-year-old man was arrested in the Ballyfermot area. He was questioned and was later released without charge.

A file will be prepared for the DPP.

Gardai are appealing for witnesses or anyone with information to contact Ballyfermot Garda Station on 01-6667200, or t he Garda Confidential Telephone Line 1800 666 111

cfeehan@herald.ie

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