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gun attack Gardai probing shooting of teen (17) unable to get statements due to Covid claims

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The scene of the shooting incident on Eugene Street in The Coombe area of Dublin. Photo: Gerry Mooney

The scene of the shooting incident on Eugene Street in The Coombe area of Dublin. Photo: Gerry Mooney

The scene of the shooting incident on Eugene Street in The Coombe area of Dublin. Photo: Gerry Mooney

The investigation into the attempted murder of a teenage boy in the capital is being hampered because gardai have not been able to obtain statements from a number of people who are claiming that they have Covid-19 or are fearful of contracting the virus if they meet with officers.

A massive investigation is ongoing into the non-fatal shooting of the 17-year-old at Eugene Street in the south inner city shortly before 11pm on Wednesday.

Gardai have obtained a number of statements including from a taxi driver who had been flagged down by the victim just moments before he was shot three times however they are hoping to speak to a lot more people.

“There are people that gardai want to interview but they are refusing to make themselves available because they are saying they have Covid or are afraid of getting it. There has been no way of confirming these accounts so gardai will just have to wait to speak to them,” a senior source said.

The 17-year-old boy is understood to be making a good recovery at St James’ Hospital where it is expected that he will be treated for a number of days. Gardai have still not spoken to him.

He was shot in the neck and leg and a bullet grazed his face in the attack in which up to six bullets from a handgun were fired at him.

The victim took to social media on Wednesday night where he posted a video of himself from his hospital bed.

With tubes coming from his nose. he taunted his attackers in the recording which has been widely distributed on social media.

Gardai have not made any arrests or carried out any searches yet in relation to the attempted murder of the boy.

One theory being probed is that a local criminal aged in his 20s may have targeted the teenager because he was “jealous” of the amount of money some of the teenager’s friends are making from drug dealing.

While the shooting victim is known to gardai, he has no previous criminal convictions and has never appeared before the Children’s Court.

However sources say that he is on “friendly terms” with a dangerous grouping of south inner city thugs who run a drugs distribution network in the area.

Gardai were not aware of any threats against the teenager who is friendly with a group of notorious young street dealers who have links to the Kinahan cartel.

This mob had been using a number of sheds and stables in the Liberties area as a drug dealing headquarters before it was demolished by Dublin City Council last May.

Sources say they control street dealing in the Thomas, Francis and Meath Street areas of the south inner city which has brought them into conflict with other local gangs.

Detectives have been monitoring the activities of the ruthless thugs behind the drugs network for a number of years.

Gardaí are appealing for information on the getaway car used in the murder bid, a Black Hyundai I30, with registration plate 07 TS 4838, which was found burned out on Greenville Avenue.

They are also appealing for anyone who was in the Eugene Street and Greenville Avenue locations between 10:30pm and 11:30pm on Wednesday to contact them and anyone who has camera footage including dash-cam and mobile phone footage from the locations at that time to come forward.

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