Man ‘spits on fizzing fuse of pipe bomb’ to stop it blowing up both he and a child in Rasharkin

The scene at Rasharkin. Picture: McAuley Multimedia.

A man has told how he spat on the fuse of a “fizzing” pipe bomb to stop it blowing up beside him and a child.

Matthew Mitchell said that around 10pm on Tuesday he noticed a shadow on the window sill of a house in Rasharkin.

He described how he and the child had a narrow escape.

The 29-year-old told Q Radio: “I seen it burning on our window sill. I opened the window, put out the fuse on the thing and threw it onto the ground.

“I opened the window, grabbed the pipe bomb and spat on it. It was fizzing away. If I hadn’t of it would have blew up. There was a child sitting at my knee.”

He said a male had thrown the device and after Mr Mitchell had put it out he chased him.

“They are a pack of cowards,” he added.

Police said a viable pipe bomb was left on the window sill of a house in the Moneyleck Park area of Rasharkin and that another viable pipe bomb was thrown through the front window of another property.

Both devices were recovered by army ammunition technical officers in the Moneyleck Park area.

Inspector Colin Ash said: “We received a report that a device had been left outside an address in the Moneyleck Park area of Rasharkin around 10pm last night, Tuesday 16 April.

“Residents have been able to return to their homes.

“I would like to thank the local community for their patience in giving us time as we dealt with the incident.

“Our enquiries are continuing and I would appeal to anyone who noticed any suspicious activity in the area or anyone with any information, to contact police on the non-emergency number 101, quoting reference number 1321 of 16/04/19.

“Alternatively, information can also be provided to the independent charity Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 which is 100% anonymous and gives people the power to speak up and stop crime.”

North Antrim Sinn Fein MLA Philip McGuigan said on Tuesday night: “This is a very reckless action”.

North Antrim MLA Mervyn Storey condemned those responsible for the pipe bombs

Mr Storey, who is a member of the Policing Board, said: “This is a very concerning incident and caused disruption to people living in the area. Anyone involved in placing such a device clearly has no regard for life.

“I would appeal for anyone who witnessed anything suspicious in the area to contact the police and assist them in bringing those responsible to justice.”

DUP councillor John Finlay added: “This was a reckless attack in a residential area which must be condemned by everyone.

“There is no place for intimidation and terror in our society and the people responsible must be apprehended and face the courts.

“Thankfully neither of these devices exploded and no injuries were sustained. Such devices however are extremely unstable and indiscriminate. They could have caused injury or death to anyone who came into contact with them.”

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