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shocking footage Two men suffer injuries and teen arrested after car driven into Co Down band parade

Police said that a black Seat Leon failed to stop during the incident in Co Down.

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Two men suffered minor injuries when a car was driven through a band parade in Co Down.

Police said a black Seat Leon failed to stop for officers and drove into the parade in the Newry Street area of Rathfriland.

The incident was reported to police at around 8.40pm on Friday, and a 16 year-old-male has since been arrested on suspicion of six counts of dangerous driving, six counts for failing to stop for police, aggravated taking and driving away, disqualified driving, no insurance and three counts of failing to stop and report and remain at an injury road traffic collision.

Video of the incident shows the car driving towards the group before it mounts the footpath.

People can be heard shouting at the car to stop but it left the area at speed.

Armagh, Banbridge and Craigavon District Chief Inspector Barney O’Connor said: “Last night at approximately 8:40pm, a black Seat Leon failed to stop, a number of times, for police who were on duty in connection with a band parade in Rathfriland. This vehicle then drove into the parade as it made its way up Newry Street. One man aged in his 40s and one man aged in his 30s received minor injuries following the incident.

“The male, has been arrested on suspicion of six counts of dangerous driving, six counts for failing to stop for police, aggravated taking and driving away, disqualified driving, no insurance and three counts of failing to stop and report and remain at an injury road traffic collision. He was also arrested on suspicion of two counts of common assault and other related offences. He remains in police custody at this time.

“At this stage, we are not investigating a sectarian hate crime motive in relation to this incident.

“Our officers are continuing to robustly investigate the circumstances of this incident. Officers have already spoken to a number of those present and I know this has been alarming for all those involved. I would like to thank those in the community and those involved from the band, who have already come forward, for their cooperation and assistance.

“I would still appeal to anyone who witnessed the incident or who may have footage taken to contact police on 101, quoting reference number 1633 17/09/21. "

Alliance councillor for the area Eoin Tennyson said: “Shocking reports from Rathfriland that a car drove through two marching bands last night.

“Utterly reckless and disgraceful behaviour. Thankfully no one was seriously injured or killed.”

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TUV leader Jim Allister said: “There is palpable anger across the unionist community following last night’s outrageous incident in Rathfriland in which a car was driven into two bands.

“This is entirely understandable as we could very well be waking up to news of many people injured or worse.

“The shocking behaviour captured on film needs to result in a robust PSNI investigation and arrests.”

Additional reporting by Sunday World

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