Gardaí are examining whether the victims of the latest gangland gun attack in Dublin were shot dead by the same people who killed another member of the family.
Mother-of-six Antoinette Corbally-Devoy (48) and Clinton Shannon (30) died from multiple gunshot wounds to the head and body in a machine gun attack in Ballymun.
However, gardaí believe the killers intended to kill the dead woman’s brother, Derek ‘Bottler’ Devoy (37). He was at the scene, outside a house on Balbutcher Drive owned by the family, but fled to safety on foot.
As Devoy escaped uninjured his sister, who opened the door of the house to him, was shot dead. Mr Shannon, who was sitting in a car that his friend Devoy had just got out of, was also killed.
Two other people, a friend of Ms Corbally-Devoy, Brian Moran (52), and the dead woman's niece Andrea Devoy (18) were injured. Mr Moran was shot in the leg but is expected to make a full recovery, while Ms Devoy suffered grazes to her head.
Initially it was believed the attack was linked to a simmering feud in the Ballymun area, which has involved several non-fatal shootings and gun attacks.
Detectives immediately suspected Devoy, a career criminal with several convictions for gun crime, was targeted in what would have been an escalation in that feud. That line of inquiry is still be examined but local sources have told the Garda they believe Devoy had been targeted by the same people who killed his brother 3½ years ago.
Michael Devoy (41) was shot dead in January 2014, the day after his release from a short prison sentence. He was the chief suspect for shooting at a group of people leaving a party at a Dublin pub in 2013.
Nobody died in that shooting but a well-known criminal suffered a head wound and a several bystanders were injured.
While Michael Devoy’s murder remains unsolved gardaí believe criminals now linked to the Kinahan-Hutch feud killed him in recent for shooting one of their number outside the pub the previous year.
Michael Devoy had been warned on release from prison that his life was in danger. As a result, he was wearing a bullet proof vest when shot.
He was lured to a meeting place in west Dublin and shot in the head and neck before his remains were dumped by a roadside in Tallaght.
Derek Devoy was released from prison 13 months after his brother's killing. He too was warned his life was under threat from the people who killed his brother.
One line of inquiry for last Wednesday’s shooting is that Derek Devoy was being targeted over fears he was seeking revenge for his brother’s death.
He was bringing a young child to the house at Balbutcher Drive where his sister Antoinette lived with her elderly mother. However, when the front door to the property was opened, two gunmen appeared outside and opened fire.
Derek Devoy dropped the child he was carrying and ran to safety. Mr Shannon was a locksmith with no criminal record and had an address in Swords, Co Dublin.