The son of Carrickfergus shooting victim Geordie Gilmore has branded those behind his father’s murder as “cowards”.
Mr Gilmore was shot in the neck as he sat in a car in the Pinewood Avenue area of the Co Antrim town on Monday at around 2.15pm. The 44-year-old is believed to have been involved in a loyalist feud in the town.
He was rushed to hospital in a serious condition and put into intensive care, he later passed away.
The gunman is thought to have made off on foot from the scene. On Tuesday police launched a murder investigation describing the killing as a ruthless attack in broad daylight.
On Sunday night, the former UDA ‘commander’ taunted paramilitaries. He posted on Facebook: “The day of the UDA putting people out of Carrick are over.”
Following his death, son George Junior said in a Facebook post: “RIP dad you’ll never be forgot love you always…. murdered by cowards.”
Head of Serious Crime Branch Detective Chief Superintendent Raymond Murray said: “Our thoughts are with the Gilmore family at this time as they come to terms with their loss.
“We are still at an early stage of the investigation, which is now a murder investigation, and while we have definite lines of enquiry I would appeal to local people to help us identify the person or persons who orchestrated and carried out this ruthless attack in broad daylight.
“Those involved had no consideration for the local community when they carried out their attack in a residential street populated with families, young children and older people. Help us remove them from your community and place them before the courts.
“I would urge anyone with information or who believes they can assist the investigation in any way to please come forward. You can call police on 101 or if you would prefer to provide you information anonymously you can by calling the Crimestoppers charity on 0800 555 111.”
A dispute between loyalist factions in the town has been ongoing for months. On Monday three men appeared in court charged over the attempted murder of a pub doorman in the town over the weekend.
UUP Roy Beggs MLA said: “The murder of George Gilmore and the attempted murder which preceded it must be condemned without reservation. These vicious attacks are shocking reminders that there are still people in our society who are prepared to use extreme violence to exert control in parts of the community.
“The events in and around Carrickfergus over the past few days have been horrendous. Action needs to be taken to bring a degree of security to the entire community. I support a strong security response by the PSNI to ensure guns are found and removed, so that no one else is caught up in the cross fire of a bloody feud which has gone on for far too long.”
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