Ombudsman called in after Cop's raid
Father receives terrified call

A local Sinn Féin worker has lodged a complaint with the Police Ombudsman’s office claiming that PSNI officers stormed into his house and demanded personal information from his teenage son.

Kevin O’Leary says that his son was questioned by officers who had called to inform the family that their daughter had taken ill and was in hospital. Kevin, from Hamill Glen, was shopping with a friend on Thursday afternoon when he got a terrified phone call from his son, 17-year-old Kevin Junior, who was at the family home with his younger brother Seamus (15).

The teenager told his father that two PSNI Land Rovers and two unmarked PSNI cars had pulled into the street around 1.30pm and two PSNI officers went to the O’Leary’s house. They asked Kevin Junior where his father was. When he said his father was not at home they questioned the shaken teenager.

“They started to question him and ask him things like his age, his date of birth and where he worked,” said the father-of-six.

“They then pushed past him into the house and told him that they would arrest him. They went into the living room and hall and looked at correspondence that was on the coffee table in the living room, they also lifted my car keys from the fireplace and asked for my mobile number.

“They then told Kevin Junior that his sister was in hospital,” he added.

Sixteen-year-old Eilish O’Leary had been taken to hospital after collapsing.
“This only ended when neighbours came into the house and told them to get out,” said Kevin. “My kids are in total turmoil over this and I think that it is ridiculous the way they have been treated.

“I think it is possible that this happened because I work for Sinn Féin,” he added.

Sinn Féin MLA Michael Ferguson said that the treatment of the O’Leary family was disgraceful.

“It is shameful that they came to the house invading the family’s privacy and traumatising the children while at the same time bringing the news that their sister had been hospitalised,” said Councilor Ferguson.

“The PSNI are still on a war footing where they are treating everyone in West Belfast as a target. The Police Ombudsman’s office need to look into this as Mr O’Leary’s children were threatened and bullied,” he added.

A spokesman for the Police Ombudsman’s Office said, “We have received a complaint about this issue and we are looking into it.”

Journalist:: Roisin McManus

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