herald

Monday 18 June 2018

Gardai target north inner city in hunt for boxing gym gunman

Pete Taylor's partner Karen Brown arriving at St Vincent's Hospital yesterday
Pete Taylor's partner Karen Brown arriving at St Vincent's Hospital yesterday

Gardai have drawn up a list of around half a dozen criminals they believe could be the lone gunman responsible for the Bray gym bloodbath.

Gardai have drawn up a list of around half a dozen criminals they believe could be the lone gunman responsible for the Bray gym bloodbath.

A source told the Herald last night that the focus of that strand of the investigation continued to be the capital's north inner city.

Detectives suspect that the gunman fled there on a bicycle after escaping from the VW Caddy which he did not even attempt to burn out in the Ringsend area just an hour after the gun attack.

"There are around half a dozen dangerous young men who are being actively looked at but no arrests have yet been made and the handgun used in the attack has not been recovered," the source said last night.

As the massive garda investigation continues, Pete Taylor's partner Karen Brown was photographed yesterday afternoon as she visited the injured shooting victim at St Vincent's Hospital at around 2.30pm.

Horrific

Ms Brown (30) walked into the hospital with a Nike trainers box and a container which appeared to contain clothing and a towel.

Dressed in sports gear and wearing sunglasses, she also appeared to be bringing a container of food to her lover who is understood to be making a good recovery from the horrific injuries he received when a bullet exited his arm and entered his chest.

It is understood Ms Brown spent a number of hours at Mr Taylor's bedside as he continues to recover from his injuries.

Mr Taylor and Ms Brown are the only directors of a cafe company which is being wound up (see panel, below). They are also in business together in a retail company called Brayzin.

Officers are expected to officially warn Mr Taylor of an active threat against his life and offer him detailed security advice.

There is no suggestion that he or the other men shot have any involvement in crime.

The gun attack led to the murder of innocent Bobby Messett who was shot in the head.

Ian Britton (35), another local man who has no involvement in crime, was also hospitalised after he was shot three times in the leg.

A source told the Herald: "A number of different scenarios are being looked at. The geography alone of where the van was abandoned, and the direction the suspected gunman cycled indicates that they may be from the north inner city."

Local criminals have traditionally used the Ringsend area to dump getaway cars before fleeing back to the other side of the River Liffey.

Identified

It is understood that gardai have not yet formally identified a suspect from that area, but are continuing inquiries into a number of known offenders who have been linked to firearm crimes in the past.

Meanwhile, a large crowd is expected to attend this morning's funeral of grandad and father-of-three Mr Messett.

The funeral will take place at St Mochonog's Church in his native Kilmacanogue, Co Wicklow, at 11.30am and will be followed a burial in the adjoining cemetery.

The popular sportsman was shot in the head during the attack.

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