Police will continue to pursue those behind Caldwell shooting, PSNI chief says

Police in Northern Ireland will continue to “relentlessly pursue” those responsible for shooting senior detective John Caldwell a year ago, PSNI Chief Constable Jon Boutcher has said.

Mr Boutcher paid tribute to Mr Caldwell’s “tremendous and selfless courage” as he continues to recover from his injuries.

Mr Caldwell was shot a number of times in front of his son by dissident republicans at a sports complex in Omagh, Co Tyrone, on February 22 2023.

He was packing up after coaching a youth football team when he was targeted.

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak visited Mr Caldwell in hospital.

He made his first public appearance since the shooting at a garden party hosted by the King at Hillsborough Castle in May.

A number of people have been arrested and charged in relation to the shooting, which police linked to dissident republicans.

Mr Boutcher said: “It’s one year on since this cowardly attempt to take John’s life took place.

“This despicable attack took place among terrified children and parents and, distressingly, in front of John’s young son.

PSNI data breach
PSNI Chief Constable Jon Boutcher paid tribute to the bravery of John Caldwell (Liam McBurney/PA)

“The high esteem in which he is held by colleagues and friends speaks volumes.

“My thoughts, and that of the entire service, are with John and his family, as he continues his recovery journey.”

Mr Boutcher added: “Those responsible have nothing to offer our community and I welcome the 36 arrests to date, with 14 people charged and four reported to the Public Prosecution Service.

“Our officers will continue to relentlessly pursue those responsible for this most vicious act, seeking to bring all who have played any part before the courts.

“I know that the support received from the public has been tremendous and, for this, we extend a heartfelt thanks.”

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