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PSNI Press Association
Suspect Device

Explosive device 'designed to kill officers' thrown at police in Northern Ireland

The viable explosive device would have killed or maimed had it exploded.

A DEVICE WAS thrown at police in the Mill Road area of Newtownabbey last night.

The security alert began shortly after 10pm following a telephone call stating that a device had been thrown at a police patrol in the area.

Following a search of the area two suspicious objects were discovered at approximately 12.30am and the Mill Road was closed.


A number of homes in the area were evacuated while Army technical officers (ATO) was tasked to examine the objects. One was declared as a hoax, but the second was declared as a viable pipe bomb type device.

Mill Road was reopened to traffic and residents allowed to return to their homes shortly before 5am this morning.

Kill or maim

Chief Inspector Stephen Reid, Area Commander of Newtownabbey and Carrickfergus said:

This device was clearly designed to kill police officers and we are very fortunate no-one was killed or injured. Had it exploded it could have killed or maimed anyone close by, police officers or local people alike.

Those responsible showed total disregard for the local community and put the lives of local people in the area at risk.

He added that he would like to thank to local residents for their patience and support throughout the operation, stating, “I want to reassure them that we will not be deterred by this attack”.

Anyone with information should contact Newtownabbey Police Station on 0845 600 8000. Or, if someone would prefer to provide information without giving their details they can contact the independent charity Crimestoppers and speak to them anonymously on 0800 555 111.

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