'in the shadows' | 

Lyra McKee’s sister says killer should be ‘doubly ashamed’ while man that stored gun is jailed

“They should really be doubly ashamed of themselves, not only for killing Lyra, but also for continuing to stand in the shadows”

Lyra McKee

The gun used to murder Lyra McKee

Niall Sheerin, who has been convicted of possessing the gun used to shoot journalist Lyra McKee

Niamh CampbellBelfast Telegraph

The sister of Lyra McKee believes the gunman that killed her sibling ‘should be doubly ashamed for continuing to stand in the shadows’ whilst the man who stored the fatal gun has been jailed this week.

“It’s hard to know how to feel because whilst the story of the gun is now over, the story of the gunman isn't,” Nichola McKee Corner told the BBC.

“They should really be doubly ashamed of themselves, not only for killing Lyra, but also for continuing to stand in the shadows while their colleagues are being made to accept responsibility.”

On Wednesday, Derry father-of-three Niall Sheerin, who admitted storing the gun used to murder the journalist, was jailed for seven years.

The gun used to murder Lyra McKee

Ms McKee Corner welcomed the “positive result for policing” in getting the gun off the streets, but added: “On the other hand, it is only the beginning of the process of bringing everyone responsible for the murder of Lyra in front of court and being made to be accountable for the role they had to play in her death.”

“The gunman is ultimately responsible for [...] many other impacts on our family. They must be in front of a court, they must have to take responsibility and accountability for what they have done.”

Niall Sheerin, who has been convicted of possessing the gun used to shoot journalist Lyra McKee

She also believes the conviction of Mr Sheerin will be “a good deterrent to other young people who may be influenced by people like this, so that they know that there will be consequences to their actions”.

Ms McKee was a journalist and author, and died after being struck by a bullet fired by a gunman as she observed rioting in the Fanad Drive area of Creggan in Derry city on April 18, 2019.

Judge Mr Justice Fowler said that while it was accepted Niall Sheerin didn’t know the history of the gun — which included its use by the New IRA in the murder of the 29-year-old — it was his view Mr Sheerin was “an associate of a terrorist gang who posed a danger to the public”.

He deemed Mr Sheerin to be a “dangerous” offender and imposed an extended custodial sentence of seven years in prison followed by five years on licence.


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