Priests uninjured in armed robbery of Parochial House

June 17, 2013

The community has united in condemnation of the armed robbery of five Dominican Fathers in Newry on Thursday evening.

Around 8.30pm two men, one of whom was armed with a handgun, entered St Catherine’s Dominican Priory in Dominic Street and threatened the five priests who were in the house at the time. The men then made off with a sum of money.

Although unhurt, the clerics have been left very shaken by their ordeal.

SDLP MLA Dominic Bradley said people are disgusted: “This was a despicable act – the robbery of a community who live by a vow of poverty and depend on donations from its congregation –  those who carried it out have shown no respect whatsoever for the Church or its people.

“The Dominican community in Newry has been a part of Newry for many years and has served the people faithfully over the generations.  Newry people are disgusted by this robbery and only want those responsible to be apprehended as quickly as possible.

“I would appeal to anyone who has any information which might help the police in their enquiries to contact Ardmore police station or Crimestoppers,” he added

Sinn Fein councillor Charlie Casey has described the robbery “a frightening and worrying experience for the five priests involved”.

“This is a shocking incident to have taken place in broad daylight and my thoughts are with the priests who were in the Parochial House at the time.  Everybody has the right to feel safe in their own home and this applies to priests as much as anyone else,” he said and appealed for anyone with information to bring it to the police.

Both robbers spoke with Southern accents.  One is believed to be aged in his mid-30s, around 6’1” tall with a short grey beard.  The second man is of heavy build, had bad skin and was wearing a dark hooded top.

Police are investigating and have appealed to anyone with information  to contact them.