STAFF at Gortin Community Centre were left shocked on Monday morning when they discovered their premises had been broken into and thousands of pounds of damage caused to outdoor the MUGA (multi-use games area) pitch.
A window was smashed and the culprit(s) dropped a television on the floor. There also appeared to be burn marks to the MUGA pitch which is used for a variety of team sports. However, it is unclear whether the break-in at the building and the damage to the pitch occurred during the same incident.
Manager of Gortin Community Centre, Angela O’Brien said, “There was a bedroom entered and glass strewn all over the place. The television was lifted from its height and appeared to have been dropped to the floor. Perhaps somebody was trying to steal from the premises but there is little there to take.”
After discovering that a burglary had taken place over the weekend, staff were doubly shocked when they went to the MUGA pitch and discovered the scorch marks.
Mrs O’Brien added, “It is an all weather pitch currently being used by Ardstraw FC, as well as a lot of other local teams. It will be very expensive to re-cover. It is difficult to know what caused the burn marks.
“We are totally devastated and the local community is very disappointed this has happened.
“The centre is here for the benefit of everyone. We have no idea who was behind this or their motive.”
The attack on the centre happened sometime between 5pm on Friday, November 3 and shortly before 9am on Monday November 6.
The damage caused to an outdoor pitch, occurred sometime between the afternoon of Wednesday, November 1 and 9am on Monday.
• Anyone with information about these incidents is urged to call police in Omagh on the non-emergency number 101, quoting reference 293 of 06/11/17, or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.