Saturday 26 May 2018

Hillsborough inquest jury to deliver its verdict today

David Duckenfield: police chief
David Duckenfield: police chief

Tom Morgan in London

The jury in the Hillsborough inquests has reached a decision on whether or not the 96 fans were unlawfully killed at Britain's worst sporting disaster - and will deliver its conclusions today. The decisions will be given from 11am.

This comes after coroner Sir John Goldring explained to the jury of six women and three men that he could accept a majority decision of 7-2 or 8-1 on the question if they could not all agree.

The jury forewoman had previously indicated to the court in Warrington that unanimous decisions had already been made on every other question.

Addressing the jury yesterday, Mr Goldring said: "It is so that those families who could not be here all the time can come.


"So it will be tomorrow that I will ask you formally to return your findings in relation to the general and individual questionnaires."

The jury has been told to answer a general questionnaire of 14 questions, as well as record the time and cause of death for each of the Liverpool fans who died in the disaster on April 15, 1989.

These include questions about the police planning before the game, stadium safety, events on the day, the emergency services response and a question about whether the fans were unlawfully killed.

Last Wednesday, the jury indicated to the court in Warrington that unanimous decisions had already been made on every question apart from question six, which asks: "Are you satisfied, so that you are sure, that those who died in the disaster were unlawfully killed?"

The hearings have been ongoing for more than two years, with the jury having heard months of evidence from more than 800 witnesses.

Before they were sent out on April 6 to start their deliberations, jurors were told they could only answer "yes" to Question 6 if they were sure that match commander Chief Superintendent David Duckenfield owed a duty of care to those who died in the disaster and that he was in breach of that duty of care.

Thirdly, they would need to be satisfied that his breach of duty caused the deaths and, fourthly, that it amounted to "gross negligence". (© Daily Telegraph, London)

Irish Independent

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