Police investigating the brutal murder of Carrickfergus man Glenn Quinn have seized a dog belonging to one of the suspects.
Cops believe one of the UDA gang of killers took his pet with him on the attack on Mr Quinn at his Ashleigh Park flat on Saturday, January 4.
It is understood that a dog defecated at the scene of the crime.
And police impounded an animal belonging to a suspect in the hope that it may provide forensic clues about the brutal killing.
Two men, aged 38 and 39, and a woman aged 47, were arrested by officers investigating Mr Quinn’s death last Monday night.
The 38-year-old man was a suspect in the 2017 UDA feud murder of leading loyalist Geordie Gilmore. Sunday Life understands the dog seized by police belongs to him.
All three people were later released on police bail pending further inquiries. Police said forensic examinations and further investigations were ongoing.
Public vigil in memory of murdered Carrickfergus man Glenn Quinn at Castle Green in Carrickfergus. (Liam McBurney/RAZORPIX)
Confirming a dog has been impounded, DCI McCartney added: “When Glenn’s body was discovered local police held the scene and all appropriate steps were taken to contain evidence until the results of the post mortem were available.
“Prior to the results, and within 24 hours, three people had been arrested and were in police custody.
“The murder inquiry was launched following the results of the post mortem and at that stage the three people in custody were arrested on suspicion of murder.”
Several hundred people attended a candle-lit vigil at Carrickfergus Castle on Saturday night in memory of Mr Quinn.
East Antrim Ulster Unionist MLA John Stewart read out a statement from the Quinn family in which they described him as a true gentleman.
“He showed nothing but kindness to everyone he met,” said the family.
“Glenn hated to see anyone facing hardship and would have gone out of his way to help anyone. He was just a true gentleman.
“We fully support the ongoing police investigation and would ask anyone who has any information relating to Glenn’s murder to search their hearts and come forward to the PSNI.
Our town does not want to see this happen again to another one of their loved one,” they said.
Mr Stewart said it was testament to Mr Quinn that people had turned out in huge numbers to remember his life.
“Everyone who knew him said he was a gentleman, a kind hearted person who would never harm a fly,” said the MLA.
Local church ministers also spoke and said prayers at the vigil.
Police have said the Carrickfergus man’s murder may be linked to an assault outside his home five days before his death. They have stressed it is one line of inquiry and the investigation is at an early stage.
Detective Superintendent Jason Murphy said last week: “As a result of that assault, Glenn wasn’t injured as such… but became very frightened.”
The clash with a well known local loyalist happened shortly after tragic Glenn had been given the all clear from cancer — but he was still suffering from an incurable liver disease and believed he had just six months to live.
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