Jury finds 96 unlawfully killed at Hillsborough disaster

The inquests into the deaths of 96 Liverpool fans has found they were unlawfully killed at the Hillsborough disaster.

The jury also found the Liverpool fans were not to blame.

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Statement from former Chief David Crompton after High Court win

Former Chief Constable David Crompton has also released a statement in regards to his High Court win challenging the decision that required him to resign.

Former Chief Constable David Crompton Credit: PA

I welcome today's decision by the court to overturn the Police and Crime Commissioner's decisions, first to suspend me, and then to require me to resign.

The court's judgement concludes Dr Billings acted unlawfully from start to finish, branding his course of decision-making 'irrational', 'perverse', 'unreasonable', 'misconceived' and 'wholly disproportionate'.

The public and a police force are entitled to expect their Police and Crime Commissioner to act fairly and rationally.

The history related by the court demonstrates a complete absence of both.

Similarly, the court found the Police and Crime Panels's reasoning in support of Dr Billings to be 'thin and unconvincing'.

Dr Billings has spent a huge amount of public money trying to defend actions which he was advised in the strongest terms not to pursue by Her Majesty's Chief Inspector of Constabulary.

It is highly significant that today's judgment repeats almost all of the arguments made originally by Sir Thomas (Winsor) nearly a year ago in his advice under the statutory process to the Police and Crime Commissioner. This money would have been better spent on operational policing.

– Former Chief Constable, David Crompton

Statement from Hillsborough Family Support Group

The Hillsborough Family Support Group have released a statement following former Chief Constable David Crompton's High Court win challenging the decision requiring him to resign.

Margaret Aspinall lost her son James in the Hillsborough Disaster Credit: ITV News

I find it rather strange that today has been chosen by the court to make the announcement about David Crompton.

The decision was taken last Friday, so why wait until today to break this news, is it simply to brush it under the carpet?

David Crompton was prepared yet again to blame the Liverpool fans and made the recent Hillsborough inquests last much longer than originally expected and put the families through so much grief and pain. David has spent millions of pounds over the past few years defending the indefensible and that is why the Hillsborough Families called for him to go and I still believe that Dr Alan Billings made the correct decision.

We all must remember Dr Billings was only appointed to his role of Police and Crime Commissioner in November 2014 and he had to be seen to be doing things right.

Nothing at all surprises me what goes on, what annoys me is that this senior officer can win this case, yet we, the HFSG, went for judicial reviews and lost them, the truth surrounding Hillsborough was covered up all these years, and if Crompton had had his way, it still would be.

– Margaret Aspinall, Chairman HFSG


Families hopes a year on from the historic Hillsborough verdict

This time last year, the families of those who lost loved ones at Hillsborough were told the inquests jury had reached its verdict.

They ruled the 96 fans who died were unlawfully killed.

But the criminal investigation into what went wrong is far from over.

Our Hillsborough correspondent Andy Bonner reports on what's happened in the 12 months since history was made:

Hillsborough referee claims his statement was altered to support police agenda

Ray Lewis former match referee at Hillsborough Credit: ITV Exposure

The match referee at Hillsborough on the day of the disaster has claimed his statement was changed to support allegations fans were drunk.

ITV documentary Hillsborough: 'Smears, Survivors and the Search for Truth' airing tonight at 10.40pm will reveal the statement of referee Ray Lewis was allegedly changed to describe fans as drunk.

Mr Lewis, the referee on the pitch on April 15 1989, said he had described "mixed" groups of fans in his statement, but when he later saw a typed version of it he realised the word had been changed.

He told us he believes it was changed to support the police's agenda.

The programme will also reveal that former Premier League chairman Sir Dave Richards included allegations of bad behaviour of fans in his statement about the tragedy.

In his statement, Sir Dave, who went on to become chairman of Sheffield Wednesday after the disaster at the club's stadium, described fans shouting lewd comments about a female casualty whose blouse had become unbuttoned.

The allegations were also reported in The Sun newspaper.

Programme makers, who say Sir Dave's description of the apparently dead woman does not match any of the seven women killed in the tragedy, said when they wrote to ask him about his statement their letters were returned unopened.

The programme's investigations revealed a witness who reported the same allegations to police was the daughter of a South Yorkshire Police chief inspector who had been on duty at the FA Cup semi-final.

Cherry Daniels, whose father is retired officer David Sumner, told programme makers she informed investigating force West Midlands Police about her father's position but was told it was not relevant.

In April this year an inquests jury found the 96 victims were unlawfully killed and fans were not to blame.

Two investigations into the disaster, Operation Resolve and the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) inquiry, are due to hand files to the Crown Prosecution Service at the turn of the year.


Orgreave files due to be released by Home Office

Miners and police were involved in violent clashes at Orgreave in 1984. Credit: PA

Goverment documents relating to events at the so-called Battle of Orgreave are due to be released next year among other records relating to the 1984 miners' strike, it has emerged.

The government's rejected calls, supported by the Hillsborough families, for an independent inquiry into the Battle of Orgreave during the miners' strike.

Home Secretary Amber Rudd told the Home Affairs Select Committee the documents would be among 30 files planned to be released to the National Archives.

Miners and police were involved in violent clashes at Orgreave in 1984. Credit: PA

There were violent clashes in the summer of 1984 between miners and officers from South Yorkshire Police - the same force which was criticised for its role at the Hillsborough disaster five years later.

Former police chief to head Hillsborough probe

Former police chief to head Hillsborough probe Credit: ITV Granada

It has been revealed that Rob Beckley has been appointed to the Metropolitan Police as Assistant Commissioner to carry out the investigation into what went wrong in the lead up to the Hillsborough disaster.

Beckley will head Operation Resolve - the probe into the planning and preparation of the 1989 FA Cup semi-final between Liverpool and Nottingham Forest.

The news comes after Jon Stoddart OBE stood down from the role in September.

Most recently, Beckley was Chief Operating Officer at the College of Policing but retired in March. He has previously served in the Metropolitan Police Service, Thames Valley, Hertfordshire Constabulary and Avon and Somerset Police, where he was Deputy Chief Constable.

In a statement, Home Secretary, Amber Rudd said:

Following the decision of Assistant Commissioner Jon Stoddart OBE to stand down as head of Operation Resolve on 5 September 2016, I am pleased to inform Parliament that I have appointed Assistant Commissioner Rob Beckley QPM as the head of Operation Resolve.

– Amber Rudd

Sir Norman Bettison defends his decision to publish book on Hillsborough

There's been damning criticism of Sir Norman Bettison, the former police chief who's published a book today about the Hillsborough disaster.

Sir Norman, who led both Merseyside and West Yorkshire Police, says he's entitled to tell his story.

He witnessed the disaster as a spectator. He denies being part of a police propaganda unit set up to blame Liverpool supporters for the deaths of 96 fans.

But his book has angered the families of those who died.

Our Hillsborough Correspondent Andy Bonner reports.

Former police chief defends book on Hillsborough

A former senior police officer has defended writing a book about Hillsborough. Sir Norman Bettison denies being part of a special unit set up to blame Liverpool fans in the aftermath of the disaster. Some families and survivors have strongly criticised the books publication. The former police chief says he believes it tells an untold narrative.

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