Man left shaken by violent Christmas Eve burglary at his flat in North Belfast

A man was left badly shaken by a ‘brutal’ assault during an aggravated burglary in north Belfast on Christmas Eve, police have said.

Police are appealing for information over the violent burglary
Police are appealing for information over the violent burglary

Detectives are appealing for information over the reported incident in the Atlantic Avenue area, which involved three masked men.

In a PSNI press release, a Detective Sergeant Gardiner [no first name given] said: “Shortly after 11pm, it was reported that a 46 year old man answered the front door of the premises.

“As he opened the door of the property, three men wearing balaclavas entered and brought the man into his flat. The men, armed with knives demanded money from the man and then assaulted him.

“He received stab wounds to his head and body, which were not believed to be life threatening. He also received fractured ribs and fractured collar bone during the assault.

“He was taken to hospital for treatment to his injuries.”

Detective Sergeant Gardiner gave the reported descriptions of the attackers: “One of the men is described as being of stocky build and 5”10 in height. He wore a light coloured jacket, dark trousers and wore gloves.

“The second man is described as being of medium build, 5”8 in height and wearing a dark top, possibly a coat, dark bottoms and gloves.

“The third man is described is being of slight build and 6”2 in height. He was described as wearing a dark jacket, dark bottoms and gloves.”

He added: “This was a brutal assault of a man in his home. Although he was not seriously injured, he was left very badly shaken following this ordeal.

“This traumatic assault took place in the victim’s own home; somewhere he rightly deserves to feel safe.”

The PSNI officer gave details on how any information about the attack can be relayed to police: “Our enquiries are continuing to establish the circumstances and we would appeal to anyone in the area who witnessed anything suspicious to contact detectives on 101, quoting reference number 1878 24/12/19.”

Sergeant Gardiner said that information can also be provided to the independent charity Crimestoppers, which can be reached at the telephone number 0800 555 111 and which, he added, “is 100% anonymous and gives people the power to speak up and stop crime”.