A 23-year-old man is to appear in Enniskillen Magistrates’ Court today charged with attempted murder, after two stabbings in Cookstown at the weekend.
Detectives investigating the two attacks in the early hours of Saturday arrested eight men aged between 17 and 30 on suspicion of a number of offences including attempted murder, aggravated burglary and grievous bodily harm with intent.
Police said yesterday that they have charged a 23-year-old man with attempted murder and grievous bodily harm with intent.
The first attack took place in the William Street area at around 2.30am where a man in his 20s received a stab wound to his head. The second took place at around 3.30am in the Milburn Street and Moneymore Road area where a second man aged in his 20s suffered multiple stab wounds to his body.
Police said that both men were taken to hospital for treatment but said that their injuries were not life threatening. A PSNI spokesman said yesterday that one of the men had been discharged.
The eight men who were taken into custody were interviewed by police in relation to the two incidents, which police believe were linked. Seven were later released on police bail pending further inquiries.
Detectives have appealed for anyone who witnessed disturbances at either of the two locations at the times stated, or who has any other information, to contact them.
UUP MLA Sandra Overend said: “This is absolutely shocking. There is a certain level of anti-social behaviour in Cookstown but I have not heard about stabbings being a problem.
“I have been out in Cookstown on a Saturday night with Cookstown and District Women’s Group. We went out one night over the summer with the aim of trying to help vulnerable people get home safely, people that may have drunk too much.”
Although she has only been out for one evening so far the MLA says she would like to be further engaged in the work.
“I suppose this is a related issue that has made me aware of what it can be like late at night in Cookstown at the weekend,” she said.
I would say the people of Cookstown will be absolutely shocked that this behaviour can go on in Cookstown on a Saturday night. If they (the police) are arresting people in situations like this, I would like to add that I think they are doing their job and I would like to commend them for that.”
A PSNI spokesman said detectives are appealing for anyone who may have witnessed disturbances at either location at the times stated, or who has any information about the incidents, to contact CID in Cookstown on 0845 600 8000. Or, if members of the public would prefer to provide information without giving their details, police are asking them to contact the independent charity Crimestoppers and speak to them anonymously on 0800 555 111.