There has been an arson attack on the home of a serving police officer in Larne, County Antrim in Northern Ireland
The police officer, his wife and his daughter who were all in the house at the time of the arson attack were not injured.
Three cars that were parked in the driveway of the property on the Glenarm Road were set on fire on Thursday morning.
The Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) are investigating a motive for the attack.
This comes after violent scenes have again resumed on the streets of Belfast ahead of an emergency meeting of the Northern Ireland Assembly, with a bus having been hijacked and set on fire and a photographer for the Belfast Telegraph attacked.
A line of inquiry will be the possible involvement of the South East Antrim UDA (Ulster Defence Association), a loyalist paramilitary gang.
The organisation was behind recent rioting in Newtownabbey, County Antrim.
At the time, the police believed it was linked to a crackdown on its criminal activities.
But it is not yet clear what the motive was for the arson attack on the officer’s home.
Police said that at about 01:45 BST on Thursday, they received a report of three cars on fire at the property.
They said that all three cars had been destroyed as a result of the attack.
The arson attack had also caused scorch damage to the dwelling.
PSNI Det Ch Insp Dunny McCubbin said: “We are investigating this as an incident of arson.
“This was a completely reckless attack which could have had serious consequences.
“Thankfully, no injuries have been reported in what was a terrifying ordeal for the officer and his family.
“There are no words to describe those who would set fire to vehicles in the dark of night outside a family home when the occupants were asleep inside.
This comes after the Northern Ireland Executive has condemned the “deplorable” riots that have taken place in which 55 police officers have been injured amid over a week of violence in places such as West Belfast.
He continued by saying:
“Their actions stand in stark contrast to the officer who everyday serves our community with dignity, respect and courtesy.”
He added that police were “keeping an open mind as to the motivation behind this attack however a primary line of enquiry is that criminal elements may be responsible”.
He appealed for information and said detectives were carrying out a “full investigation” that would be “thorough and robust”.