SDLP candidate Jimmy Carr attacked while canvassing

Cllr Jimmy Carr Image copyright Sdlp
Image caption SDLP candidate Jimmy Carr says "It was awful. I don't normally cry but this is my mother at the end of the day"

A candidate in the local government elections has been kicked and punched while out canvassing.

SDLP candidate Jimmy Carr, 26, was door-to-door canvassing with his mother in the Carnhill area of Londonderry on Tuesday night when he was attacked.

"We were canvassing a lady's door for myself ahead of the elections and this man and woman started shouting abuse," said Mr Carr.

"I don't know exactly what they were saying but it got heated very quickly."

He added: "The man and woman jumped off a wall to us and they were asked to leave.

"All of a sudden they were swinging punches at me and my mother. My mother was trying to protect me.

"I was pushed to the ground and the man started kicking me around the head and kneeing me in the face. I was just trying to hold on to him as tight as I could to avoid as much damage as possible.

"He was as strong as a bull. Just a complete animal. This is something I've never encountered in my life.

"It's probably the most frightening and traumatic experience that I've ever been involved in and also for my mother.

"My mother is one of the nicest women you will ever meet. She just gets about her own business and she's such a family woman. This girl was battering her and the man hit her.

"They threatened to kill us and said they will come back to our house. It's a living nightmare."

Mr Carr said his mother has not been eating any food since the incident happened.

"You only have to look at my mother to know how upset she is. I don't normally cry but this is my mother at the end of the day," said Mr Carr.

"I wouldn't like to think the attack was politically motivated. I don't know for sure. Regardless of that, me and my mother got a beating on the street in Derry."

A 28-year-old man and a 27-year-old woman were arrested on Tuesday after the assault was reported to police before 20:00 BST.

They have since been released on bail pending further enquiries until the middle of next month.