Fifth feud murder just yards from a local youth centre
Dozens of children arriving at their local youth centre missed the fatal shooting in Dublin’s north inner city by minutes.
Up to six shots were fired at a man in his mid-20s in a case of mistaken identity less than 50 metres away from Sheriff Youth Centre.
A number of children were due to arrive at the centre, along with their parents, to begin their daily activities.
They came close to witnessing the city’s fourth gun murder linked to a bitter and bloody gang feud.
As the victim was carried into the ambulance and taken away, shocked locals stood and watched.
A five-a-side football match continued at an all-weather pitch at the back of Noctor’s pub, across from where the shooting took place.
Other pre-teen children cycled around the area with friends, gossiping about the incident, asking whether the victim had died and how many times he was shot.
Another man walked by, inquired if there was a shooting, and asked if the victim was dead, as if he was just initiating small-talk.
For many, there was little shock over the city’s latest shooting.
Elsewhere, tensions were at breaking point between locals and gardai in the direct aftermath of the murder.
A group of men and women attempted to attack a member of gardai and threatened several others within yards of the wheelie-bin where the weapon used in the murder was found.
The incident took place less than half an hour after the shooting, when a young man fled from a detective up Sheriff Street Lr and on to Seville Place.
The man then came out of the house, took off his jacket and aggressively moved towards the detective in an attempt to begin a confrontation. Several others also left their houses and shouted abuse at four gardai present.
The area was at the centre of a separate feud some 15 years ago, involving the Christy Griffin gang, which took the lives of five people.
One local told the Herald that it feels like the reputation of the area is in total disrepair.
“We can’t get any worse of a reputation around here,” he said.
“All you ever hear about is the bad stuff – it’s never the good things that make the headlines.”
The man was sympathetic towards the victim and defended the area, insisting a lot of good goes on there too.
“I can guarantee you that there are more good people than bad around here,” he said.
“No matter who the kid [victim] is, it’s terrible. It’s disgraceful that something like this can happen,” he added.
Another local woman said that criminals seem to have a free reign in the city.
“It’s disgraceful. Nobody is doing anything about it and they’re just able to do what they like,” she said.
The victim of the shooting is not believed to have been the intended targe.
It is understood the shooting was in relation to the ongoing gangland feud between the Kinahan and Hutch gangs in Dublin city.
Superintendent at Store Street Garda station, Kevin Gralton said the incident is another low.
“If it is who we think it is, I don’t see a connection as of yet to the feud. If it is the person we think it was, yes he would have been [known to gardai] but on low-level stuff,” he said.
“An innocent bystander getting shot is of course a low. But when these shootings are being carried out, it’s always a risk,” he added.
While at least 50 people were standing around the crime scene directly after the shooting, gardai are unsure how many witnessed the incident.
“There were a lot of people around after the shooting, but whether they’d just arrived or were there at the time I don’t know,” Supt Gralton said.