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'Deep loss' Family of teen who died after 'assault' say they are devastated as police launch murder probe

A 21 year old man was arrested on Thursday morning on suspicion of murder and was released pending further investigations.

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 Fionntán McGarvey

Fionntán McGarvey

Fionntán McGarvey

The family of tragic teenager Fionntán McGarvey are taking comfort from their son’s death by knowing he has saved other lives through organ donation.

The 18-year old died in the Royal Victoria Hospital yesterday, following an incident outside a pub in the Finaghy Road North area of Belfast in the early hours of Monday 27 December.

Following this death, Detectives from the PSNI's Major Investigation Team launched a murder investigation.

A 21-year-old man was arrested on Thursday morning on suspicion of murder and was released pending further investigations.

Asking for privacy from the media the devastated South Belfast family released a statement to express their sadness and overwhelming grief.

“We are devastated to lose our beautiful son Fionntán but take comfort that his wish to donate his organs will provide other families with hope at our time of deep loss. The family is grateful for the many messages of sympathy and support we have received. We would ask for privacy at this most difficult time.”

Detective Chief Inspector Raymond Phelan said: “We believe that Fionntán was assaulted outside licensed premises around 1am on Monday 27 December. Police attended and Fionntán was brought to hospital for treatment to his injuries. Tragically, despite treatment, he died this morning.

“I know there was a large number of people in the area at the time and I am appealing to anyone who may have witnessed the assault, or have any information to come forward.

I am also appealing to anyone with mobile phone or dash-cam footage that could help with enquiries to contact police on 101 quoting reference 184 of 27/12/21.

“Any footage can be uploaded onto the Major Incident Public Portal at: at: https://mipp.police.uk/operation/PSNI22R01-PO1

“A report can also be submitted online using the non-emergency reporting form via http://www.psni.police.uk/makeareport/.

You can also contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or online at http://crimestoppers-uk.org/.”

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