Teens and 12-year-old arrested at Derry polling station bomb alert riot

Gordon McCalmont.
Gordon McCalmont.

Two 17-year-old boys and a 12-year-old were arrested after five petrol bombs were thrown at police responding to a security alert at a polling station in Derry on Thursday.

One of the petrol bombs thrown was in the Glengalliagh Park area where there was a number of children in close proximity to where it landed.

Police have recovered six petrol bombs from the area, along with 20 paint bombs and two crates of empty bottles.

Police were called to the area following a report of a suspicious device around 7 p.m. in the vicinity of St. Paul's Primary School, which was being used as a polling station. The alert continues at this time.

Two teenagers aged 17 and a boy aged 12 were arrested in connection with the disorder and are currently in custody assisting with enquiries.

Superintendent Gordon McCalmont said: "There is no doubt my officers were lured into the area this evening and that those involved in this orchestrated disorder had one aim in mind - to attack police.

"This was all the more reckless by the fact that one of the petrol bombs hurled at police landed in close proximity to young children who could have been left seriously injured, or worse.

"This security alert is the second this month in this area, impacting the same community that was disrupted on May 2 during local Council elections.

"It cannot be lost on anyone the disruption this has caused in the local community, let alone the potential for serious harm that could have been caused.

“I want to thank the public for their patience however when it comes to keeping people safe we take no chances.

"I would urge anyone who has information about the disorder this evening to contact police at Strand Road on 101 quoting reference number 1639 of 23/05/19."

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.