The English police commander who in 1989 was in charge of security operations at the Hillsborough football stadium, where 96 Liverpool fans died, was found not guilty of manslaughter on Thursday.
David Duckenfield was responsible for security at the Sheffield City Sports Complex in the north of England when the FA Cup semi-final between Liverpool and Nottingham Forest was played 30 years ago.
The victims died in the middle of a stampede that took place in a fenced stadium and with an excess of capacity.
At first, the police blamed the disaster on the supposed drunkenness of the fans, an explanation that was rejected by survivors, relatives of the victims and by Liverpool, who for years struggled to figure out what happened.
Subsequent investigations absolved the fans of any responsibility. The last judgment was rendered in a Preston court after a jury failed to reach a verdict in April.mas and by Liverpool, which for years struggled to figure out what happened.
“I am stunned by the jury’s decision,” Barry Devonside said, whose son Christopher died at the age of 18 in the tragedy. “We, the families, have fought bravely for 30 years.”
Meanwhile, Liverpool Mayor Joe Anderson said the verdict is a “big disappointment” for the victims’ families.
“In recent years they have had to relive the events of that day with the longest investigation in British legal history, followed by two trials. The cost to your health and well-being, as well as losing loved ones, is unimaginable and the whole city shares your pain,” he said.