A “shocking and sickening” video of an unprovoked attack on a young girl in Newry city centre has been circulating on social media.
The young victim spoke with a local councillor earlier today (Saturday) following the horrible experience she endured at the hands of the thugs and bullies.
Independent Councillor Gavin Malone visited the young girl’s family, who he described as “lovely people and completely undeserving of this type of attack”.
“I received a disturbing phone call yesterday following a video circulating on social media,” he explained.
“When I followed up on the information I was further disturbed and deeply saddened to have it confirmed that a young person was attacked and beaten in an unprovoked attack in an open and visible location in the centre of Newry.
“Today I went to speak to the victim and her family. I had nothing to offer to this family in way of comfort explanation or assurance. I felt inadequate and ashamed.”
Councillor Malone said the details of the attack were “shocking and sickening”.
“I have no doubt that this few minutes of madness and violence will leave a trace for a lifetime for the perpetrators the victim and all of their families.
“I want to thank the young woman who bravely spoke to me today and her family for welcoming me into their home. I can tell you they are lovely people and completely undeserving of this type of attack.”
COuncillor Malone said he wanted to visit the family to tell them that “as an elected councillor in this city I am sorry, so very sorry for what they experienced”.
He added: “I wanted to say something to make the situation better but I have to be honest and say I was speechless.
“As parents we all have a responsibility to guide our children in what is right and what is wrong. This attack was so wrong. It happened right here on our home streets.
“I believe in the people of Newry and I want to do whatever I can to make our streets safe. To ensure that Newry is a welcoming and thriving city.
“I want to know my kids are safe when they are outside my home and I believe that every parent wants these same things. I imagine this video will continue to circulate and people will discuss what they see. I imagine you may hear this discussion in your workplace your home or your school.
“…before you make a comment consider the impact of this type of attack. It is always wrong. It is not who we are and it should not be who we want to be.
“Let’s work together to build our children and young people up. Show them a solid example of decency and fairness and encourage them to be brave enough to make the right choices and do the right thing.
“Leaving this family today all I can hope for is that this awful experience can be turned into a lesson for us all
We all must in our own way and in our own lives set the example that this is what cowardice looks like. Real bravery is kind.”