Police in Derry have made further arrests in connection to the murder of Northern Irish journalist Lyra McKee in 2019. Two men aged 44 and 53 were detained this morning, Friday, 1 October, and have been taken for questioning to the Serious Crime Suite at Musgrave Police Station in Belfast.
They were arrested under the Terrorism Act, over two years after the tragic crime occurred. Journalist Lyra McKee was shot dead as she observed a group of rioters on Fanad Drive in the Creggan area on 18 April 2019.
Two men arrested this morning by detectives investigating the murder of journalist Lyra McKee. pic.twitter.com/fgwV5Hu95E
— Police Derry City and Strabane (@PSNIDCSDistrict) October 1, 2021
According to a statement released by Lyra’s family, “She was standing with a group of residents… beside a police vehicle when a masked gunman shot his weapon directly towards the onlookers. One bullet struck [her] in the head and she was killed.”
Today’s arrests mean that a total of nine people have been detained in relation to the Lyra McKee shooting, three of whom have already been charged with her murder. Four other people have been charged with rioting and associated offences that occurred on the same night, with a 29 year-old and 24 year-old being charged just last week.
McKee, who grew up in Belfast and was deemed a rising literary star by the Irish Times, had only recently moved to Derry City to be with her partner, Sara Canning. Before her murder, she penned a poignant Tweet, saying, “Here’s to better times ahead and saying goodbye to bombs and bullets once and for all.”
In the days after her murder, a dissident republican group labelled ‘The New IRA’ claimed it was responsible for killing McKee.
Earlier this year, the Justice 4Lyra campaign was launched by those close to the late journalist, urging “anyone with any information or any video footage that could lead to the arrest and conviction of all those responsible” to come forward and speak with the relevant authorities.
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