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Police release footage of gunman in Belfast murder investigation

Police told reporters that children could have been killed during the attack yesterday.

CCTV images of the gunman.
CCTV images of the gunman.
Image: PSNI

Updated Dec 5th 2018, 8:47 PM

POLICE IN NORTHERN Ireland have released CCTV footage of the gunman involved in the shooting of a man outside a school in west Belfast yesterday. 

The victim, named locally as Jim Donegan, was sitting in his car when he was approached by a lone gunman at around 3.15pm yesterday. He was then shot several times, including at least once in the head, the PSNI confirmed. 

It is believed that the gunman escaped on foot, from the Glen Road beside St Mary’s Grammar School, wearing a hi-vis jacket with the word ‘security’ printed on the back. 

Police are still looking for the gunman. CCTV has now been released of the man on his way to and from the scene of the murder. 

The man is seen wearing a high visibility, hip-length yellow jacket, with ‘Security’ written on the back, dark bottoms, with a grey coloured hat or hood and carrying a black or dark bag over his shoulder.

“I believe the gun was in this bag,” Detective Chief Inspector Pete Montgomery said in a statement. 

He emerged from a lane in Clonelly Avenue onto the Glen Road around 3.10pm, walked past countless parents and children, before firing eight bullets at Jim while he sat outside the school in his red Porsche Panamera, registration JDZ34.

Montgomery said that after the shooting the man ran back up Glen Road and along the lane into Clonelly Avenue.

He appealed again for any information on the shooting.

“Jim  was a husband, a brother, a father to 2 sons and a stepfather.  Yesterday, as the school bell was ringing, a lone gunman shot Jim, as he sat in his car waiting to pick up his 13-year-old son,” he said. 

“Hundreds of children were pouring out of the 3 schools in the Glen Road area of West Belfast at the time – many of them witnessing the assassination of the father of two. Jim’s son was spared from this thankfully but only by a few seconds.

Mums, dads, grandparents, young siblings, and people in the community also saw the brutal slaying. The callous actions of the gunman will have catastrophic psychological effects on them all.

 Earlier 

 Speaking at a press conference, Chief Superintendent Jonathan Roberts condemned the “disgraceful murder”, for which there was “no justification whatsoever”.

When Roberts was asked by reporters who he believed was behind the murder, he said that while it is still early in the police investigation the involvement of dissident Republicans is “absolutely an option that police will keep open”. 

In a statement to the BBC, St Mary’s Grammar School confirmed that it is closed today following yesterday’s incident and that it will be offering counselling services to its students. 

An incident room has been set up in Musgrave Police Station and anyone with information can contact detectives there on 101 quoting reference 741 04/12/18. 

With reporting from Cormac Fitzgerald

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