THE wife of PSNI Constable Stephen Carroll said that after three long years justice has finally been attained, following the conviction of two Continuity IRA members for his murder.
Former Sinn Fein councillor Brendan McConville (40) and John Paul Wootton (20) were jailed for life at Belfast Crown Court for the murder of Constable Carroll who was shot dead in a dissident republican ambush in Craigavon on March 9, 2009.
The 48-year-old Catholic officer was the first member of the PSNI to be murdered by paramilitaries.
Delivering his verdict yesterday, Mr Justice Girvan described McConville and Wootton as "active and committed supporters of a republican campaign of violence".
He said the men were "intimately involved" in the planning of the murder of Mr Carroll.
The judge said Mr Carroll was shot dead because he was a police officer and his identity was irrelevant to his killers.
Speaking after the convictions, the murdered officer's widow Kate said that her faith in the justice system had now been restored.
She added, however, that her family and the PSNI would not rest until everyone involved in her husband's murder was brought before the courts.
"I am happy we have got this far but we have a long way to go yet. Not everyone connected with Stephen's murder has been found guilty. Our pursuit for justice for Stevie is relentless," she said.
Referring to McConville and Wootton, Mrs Carroll said she felt "pity and disgust" for them "because we are trying to move on in Northern Ireland. I pity them more than anything else."
She thanked the PSNI for "three years of tireless investigation and evidence gathering".
"My life will never be the same again . . . My son Shane and I spent 27 amazing years with Stevie. His parents have buried their son too many years before his time. The people who took Stevie's life also left a huge void in our lives that never will be filled," she said.
Chief Constable Matt Baggott described Constable Carroll as a "brave colleague who made the supreme sacrifice while serving our community."