PSNI have issued a fresh appeal for information about the brutal murder of 45-year-old Ian Ogle in Cluan Place in East Belfast.
The father-of-two was murdered on Sunday, January 27.
In a statement police confirm that Ian Ogle was attacked in Cluan Place just before 9.30pm on Sunday by a group of at least five men.
During the brutal incident, Ian’s skull was fractured and he was savagely stabbed eleven times in the back before being left to die on the street.
Detective Superintendent Jason Murphy said: “My thoughts are first and foremost with the family of Ian Ogle who was viciously attacked by a gang of men on Sunday night and sadly later died from his horrific injuries. Ian’s murder has not only disgusted the entire community, it has left his wife, two children and wider family circle completely devastated.
“I believe that the events leading up to Ian’s murder began on the Beersbridge Road, around 8.45pm on Sunday evening, when an altercation took place outside a fast food outlet. The exact circumstances of that incident are still developing, but I believe that Ian was there. I want to hear from anyone who witnessed this altercation or who knows anything about it, to contact police.
“Shortly before 9.30pm, Ian’s killers parked a black Seat Leon, registration number JGZ 7406 in Langtry Court, just off Templemore Avenue. They then walked the short distance to Cluan Place, via Templemore Avenue and the Albertbridge Road. After the attack, they returned to Templemore Avenue - some of the killers got into the car and others dispersed on foot from Langtry Court, through the houses. The car was driven along Templemore Avenue, into Major Street and onto the lower Newtownards Road, before being left at Pitt Place.
“I have deliberately decided not to publicise descriptions of those who were involved. People’s perceptions of clothing and descriptions differ and I don’t want to lose valuable witness evidence. Instead, I am interested in events. A fight on the Beersbridge Road, a group of at least five men walking or running to and from Cluan Place and a black Seat Leon car at Langtry Court. All of this happened between 8.30pm and 10pm on Sunday night. Did you see anything?
“There has been widespread speculation about the motive for Ian’s murder. Only those who were involved know how they sought to justify a family man being brutally murdered in the street. I want to be clear - there was no justification for the murder of Ian Ogle.
“I can confirm that one line of enquiry is that Ian was murdered by individuals who were members of East Belfast UVF. The UVF have issued statements in relation to Ian’s murder. It is too early in the investigation to establish the veracity of those.
“I have a number of appeals to make today. Firstly I want those with influence to work with us to locate these men and bring them to justice and I want those who know about what these men did before and after the attack to contact us.
“I would also like to hear from anyone who was in the area of the Beersbridge Road, Albertbridge Road, Templemore Avenue or Lower Newtownards Road, between 8.30pm and 10pm on Sunday night. If you were driving in that area or have any dash-cam footage, please contact us. If you have found recently discarded clothing or weapons of any sort, I want to know about that. Please do not discount anything – you may not think that you saw anything of importance, but please tell us and we can determine this.
“Since Sunday night the Major Investigation Team has worked closely with local policing and the local community. So far we have arrested six people and are actively pursuing others. We have conducted 14 searches and visited nearly 200 premises. We are viewing more than 70 hours of CCTV footage.
“I recognise that Ian’s murder was not just an attack on Ian - it was an attack on the fabric of the community. Ian’s killers have united the entire community in condemnation. Their fear tactics have not dissuaded the community from their resolute determination to see justice done. As a police service, we stand alongside the community and I want to thank the people of East Belfast for their patience, help and understanding during this intensive investigation. We are absolutely committed to bringing Ian’s killers to justice and continuing to work with them to build a safe and peaceful community.
“If anything positive is to come from Ian’s murder, it will be that the fear and intimidation that some people use to influence, has been starkly exposed to the community and condemned from every corner. If you want to talk to the investigation team at Musgrave police station, you can contact us on 101 referencing 1303 of 27/1/19 or by calling Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 which is completely anonymous.”
To date the three men aged 31, 45 and 49 and the two women aged 35 and 36 who were arrested have been released on bail pending further enquiries.
The 21 year old man arrested on suspicion of murder remains in police custody.