Cookstown man was sitting down to a beer when ‘bullets’ pierced living room window

Bullet hole in window of Stewart Avenue home

Bullet hole in window of Stewart Avenue home

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The middle-aged man whose home was targeted in a gun attack at a Cookstown housing estate is ‘lucky to be alive’ according to a local politician.

It is understood the victim, who is in his 50s, was just about to sit down to a beer in his living room when a shot pierced the front window.

The attack left living window shattered

The attack left living window shattered

Known locally as a quiet man, he told this reporter he did not want to talk about his ordeal, but said that he thought a shotgun had been used in the late night shooting, and that “two bullets” were found.

Mid Ulster UUP MLA Sandra Overend has condemned the “mindless criminals” responsible for the strike, while Cookstown councillor Trevor Wilson said there is “no place in society for this sort of action”.

Local representatives have urged anyone with information to contact detectives in Cookstown on the 101 number.

Mrs Overend said: “I was utterly astounded to hear about shots being fired at a house in Cookstown on Wednesday night.

It is understood two bullets were found in the living room

It is understood two bullets were found in the living room

“It is a miracle that no one was killed or seriously injured.

“Those who carried out this attack are mindless criminals with no regard for human life or safety. The shots were fired in a heavily built-up area which is home to many young families, putting many lives at risk. Incidents like this have no justification whatsoever. No use or threats of violence can be condoned in Northern Ireland, for any reason.

“I hope that whoever carried out this horrendous attack can be brought before the courts as soon as possible.”

Cllr Wilson added: “I completely condemn this attack.”

DUP MLA Ian McCrea has branded the attack “mindless but murderous”.

“I am relieved that no one was injured,” he said. “My thoughts are with the man who lives in the property.

“Violence has no place in our society and all right thinking people will join my condemnation of this shooting.”

He went on to say local residents “are in complete shock that such an incident could happen in the area” and “fear for their own safety and particularly for their children.”

One shot was fired through the front window of the Stewart Avenue home at around 11.15pm on March 9.

A spokesperson for the PSNI has said the motive for the attack is still under investigation.