News about the Irish & Irish American culture, music, news, sports. This is hosted by the Irish Aires radio show on KPFT-FM 90.1 in Houston, Texas (a Pacifica community radio station)

May 08, 2006

Beaten Teenager Dies In Hospital

Michael McIlveen and a friend were confronted by a group in an alley at Garfield Place, Ballymena, on Sunday.

Beaten Teenager Dies In Hospital

A 15-year-old boy who was attacked by a gang in County
Antrim has died in hospital from his injuries.

A relative said the attackers hit Michael with a baseball
bat and "jumped on his head". His friend escaped.

Michael managed to get home where the extent of his
injuries was realised. Four men and a juvenile are being
questioned about the sectarian assault.

The police have launched a murder inquiry.

The teenager had been treated in Antrim Area Hospital where
his family had been at his bedside.

'Sectarian nature'

His aunt told the BBC he had been working during the day
and had gone out to get a pizza. He was just leaving the
restaurant when he was attacked at about 0030 BST.

She believes he was targeted because he was a Catholic.

The police district commader for Ballymena, Superintendent
Terry Shevlin, said police were "quite clear that the
motive for this assault was of a sectarian nature".

He said there appeared to have been an initial
"altercation" at a cinema in the town, before the victim
was chased to the scene of the attack.

Mr Shevlin said police had increased patrolling in
Ballymena, but said the community had to do more to combat

Secretary of State Peter Hain condemned the attack.

Story from BBC NEWS:
Published: 2006/05/08 20:53:40 GMT

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