Northern Ireland

NI paper review: Donegan murder aftermath makes headlines

front page daily mirror, Thursday 6 December 2018
front page news letter Thursday 6 December 2018

The release of CCTV which captures the gunman in a fatal shooting in west Belfast makes the headlines in Thursday's papers.

Jim Donegan was killed while waiting in his Porsche to collect his son from outside his school on Tuesday.

The Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) has now shared footage of the moments before and after the shooting on the Glen Road.

It shows a man wearing a yellow high-vis jacket with a hood.

Media playback is unsupported on your device
Media captionCCTV footage of the gunman before and after the shooting has been released by police

The Irish News describes the images as "chilling".

According to the paper, sources said the 43-year-old victim may have "found himself on the outskirts of an ongoing Dublin criminal feud".

The sister of a 15-year-old witness, told the Belfast Telegraph her brother, "saw the body lying on the ground with some of his teachers huddled around trying to get help".

Anna Burroughs added: "It's unsettling to think that someone in our community would think it's acceptable to fire a weapon in the vicinity of so many young children."

Image caption Jim Donegan was shot dead as he waited to pick his son up from school

Another man told the paper: "Some fella just ran up and shot him.

"I went straight over to the car and there he was, dead. He was covered in blood. Everybody was shaking like a leaf," he added.

At a press conference on Wednesday, Det Ch Insp Peter Montgomery said: "Hundreds of children were pouring out of the schools in the Glen Road area of west Belfast at the time - many of them witnessing the assassination of the father of two."

Media playback is unsupported on your device
Media caption"We took our coats off and put them round the car"

The Daily Mirror reports that Det Ch Insp Montgomery said the gunman fired off eight shots during the attack.

According to the News Letter, the officer added that children who saw the attack would "no longer be dreaming about Santa or presents," but rather, "having nightmares about a murder in broad daylight outside their school".

Two men, aged 49 and 51, have been arrested in connection with the investigation.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Developer Lawrence Kenwright is behind the new George Best-themed hotel in Belfast

'Living nightmare'

In other news, a developer has threatened to withdraw investment due to issues with Belfast city council, according to the Belfast Telegraph and Irish News.

Hotelier Lawrence Kenwright told the papers that relations with local government had "turned into a living nightmare".

The businessman had originally intended to invest £80m in the city but in a letter sent to CEO of the council Suzanne Wylie and Lord Mayor Deirdre Hargey, he said that would now be reduced to £40m.

Mr Kenwright also wrote: "The behaviour of officers is stifling growth, discouraging inward investment and damaging Belfast and the wider Northern Ireland economy".

The council told both newspapers it would not be commenting on the matter.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Unionists have said they are unhappy with the deal

The fallout from the government's full publication of the Brexit legal advice makes an appearance on the front page of the News Letter.

It reports that the DUP has labelled it "devastating" and warned the deal could result in "protracted and repeating rounds of negotiations" without power to exit.

Meanwhile, UUP leader Robin Swann said it was "unbelievable that this or any prime minister would even consider signing the UK up to what is on the table at present".

On Thursday, the Commons will focus on Brexit's economic effects.

A vote on the withdrawal deal and the declaration on future relations will take place on 11 December.