The murder of a young man in Dublin’s north inner city may have been linked to a bitter feud between two local crime factions, it was revealed today.
The 24-year-old, named locally as Gavin McCarthy, was shot several times outside Noctor’s Pub in Sheriff Street. He is the 14th gangland murder victim this year.
Armed gardaí have been patrolling the Sheriff Street area for the last two years as part of an intensive policing regime to keep feuding gangs apart.
Despite their efforts, Mr McCarthy, who was known to gardaí, is the third man to have been shot dead in the area in the last two years.
The feud started when notorious drug dealer Christy Griffin, from Canon Lillis Avenue, was charged with raping his partner’s daughter over several years.
He was found guilty and jailed for life in April 2007.
Local crime factions in Sheriff Street split over the sex attacks and began targeting each other – some supporting the victim and others Griffin.
Two murders were carried out after the criminal was first charged.
Gerard Byrne, 25, from Ferryman’s Crossing, was shot dead in the middle of the neighbouring IFSC on December 13, 2006 and a fortnight later 28-year-old Stephen Ledden was shot dead at a home in Oriel Street.
Forensic examinations at the scene of the latest attack are expected to last most of the day.
Detectives believe the killer cycled up to the victim as he walked near Noctor’s bar before opening fire and escaping on the bike.
Superintendent Ray Barry, who is heading the investigation from Store Street Garda Station, issued a description of the main suspect in the murder.
“We are appealing for information on a young man between the ages of 17-19 who was wearing dark clothing and had a scarf on his face,” the officer said.
“It seems he arrived on the scene on a bike and made his escape on a bike.”
Gardaí believe the bike and the handgun used in the killing were dumped nearby but neither has been recovered.
Anyone who was in the Sheriff Street area between 8.30pm and 9.30pm last night is urged to contact detectives at Store Street Garda Station.