Hillsborough Inquests find that 96 Liverpool fans were unlawfully killed

The Inquests took over two years to complete

The inquests into the deaths of 96 Liverpool fans as a result of crowd crushes has revealed that those fans were unlawfully killed.

On April 15th, 1989, Liverpool fans were overcrowded into the Lepping's Lane end of Hillsborough for their FA Cup semi-final Nottingham Forest. Seven of the nine jurors agreed that those fans were unlawfully killed as a result of negligence by police. All 14 jurors agreed that fan behaviour did not cause the tragedy.

The jurors were given 14 questions to answer over the two-year period and unanimously agreed on 13 of the questions they were asked.

Here are the results the jury gave into the deaths of the Liverpool fans.

Question 1: Basic Facts of the Disaster

Do you agree with the following statement: Ninety-six people died as a result of the disaster at Hillsborough Stadium on 15 April, 1989, due to crushing in the central pens of the Leppings Lane terrace, following the admission of a large number of supporters to the stadium through exit gates.

Answer: Yes

Question 2: Police Planning for the Semi-Final Match

Was there any error or omission in police planning and preparation for the semi-final match on 15 April, 1989, which caused or contributed to the dangerous situation that developed on the day of the match?
Jurors were advised to consider factors including whether there could and should have been some different distribution of the supporters of the two teams within the stadium, or some different turnstile arrangement, in order to increase the number of turnstiles available for Liverpool supporters.

Answer: Yes

Question 3: Policing of the Match and the Situation at the Turnstiles

Was there any error or omission in policing on the day of the match which caused or contributed to a dangerous situation developing at the Leppings Lane turnstiles?
Jurors were advised to consider factors including whether senior officers could and should have done more to identify the risk of a dangerous build-up of supporters at the turnstiles.

Answer: Yes

Question 4: Policing of the Match and the Crush on the Terrace

Was there any error or omission by commanding officers which caused or contributed to the crush on the terrace?
Jurors were advised to consider factors including whether in the period before the start of the match, it was or should have been obvious to those in the police control box that the central pens of the west terrace were unusually or dangerously overcrowded.

Answer: Yes

Question 5: The Opening of the Gates

When the order was given to open the exit gates at the Leppings Lane end of the stadium, was there any error or omission by the commanding officers in the control box which caused or contributed to the crush on the terrace?
Jurors were advised to consider factors including whether the commanding officers in the control box could and should have understood that the order would lead to large numbers of supporters entering and many of those supporters going down the central tunnel.

Answer: Yes

Question 6: Determination on Unlawful Killing Issue

Are you satisfied, so that you are sure, that those who died in the disaster were unlawfully killed?

Answer: Yes

Question 7: Behaviour of the Supporters

Was there any behaviour on the part of football supporters which caused or contributed to the dangerous situation at the Leppings Lane turnstiles?
Jurors were advised to consider factors including whether some fans behaved in a way which was unusually forceful or resistant to police control, and whether a significant number of fans were without tickets in the area.

Answer: No

Question 8: Defects in Hillsborough Stadium

Were there any features of the design, construction and layout of the stadium which you consider were dangerous or defective and which caused or contributed to the disaster?
Jurors were advised to consider factors including whether or not the entrance area at the Leppings Lane end of the stadium had too few turnstiles for a capacity match for which segregation was necessary, and if capacity figures for the west terrace were correctly calculated and set when the stadium was issued its safety certificate in 1979.

Answer: Yes

Question 9: Licensing and Oversight of Hillsborough Stadium

Was there any error or omission in the safety certification and oversight of Hillsborough Stadium that caused or contributed to the disaster?
Jurors were advised to consider factors including whether the capacity of the west terrace should have been clarified, reconsidered and/or recalculated after any developments and changes to the stadium between 1979 and 1989, and if any concerns about any features should have been raised by the relevant authorities.

Answer: Yes

Question 10: Conduct of Sheffield Wednesday FC before the Day of the Match

Was there any error or omission by Sheffield Wednesday FC (and its staff) in the management of the stadium and/or preparation for the semi-final match on 15 April, 1989, which caused or contributed to the dangerous situation that developed on the day of the match?
Jurors were advised to consider factors including whether the tickets issued by the club for the match were unclear or misleading, and if signs directing fans to the banks of turnstiles in Leppings Lane on the day were confusing.

Answer: Yes

Question 11: Conduct of Sheffield Wednesday FC on the Day of the Match

Was there any error or omission by Sheffield Wednesday FC (and its staff) on 15 April, 1989, which caused or contributed to the dangerous situation that developed at the Leppings Lane turnstiles and in the west terrace?

Answer: No

Question 12: Conduct of Eastwood & Partners (Consultant Engineers to Sheffield Wednesday FC)

Should Eastwood & Partners have done more to detect and advise on any unsafe or unsatisfactory features of Hillsborough Stadium which caused or contributed to the disaster?
Jurors were advised to consider factors including whether or not Eastwood & Partners correctly calculated capacity figures for the west terrace areas in 1979, and the reasons for any errors of calculation.

Answer: Yes

Question 13: Emergency Response and the Role of the South Yorkshire Police

After the crush in the west terrace had begun to develop, was there any error or omission by the police which caused or contributed to the loss of lives in the disaster?
Jurors were advised to consider factors including whether or not police officers (including commanding officers) could and should have appreciated a crush was developing and taken steps to relieve it at an earlier stage, and whether they reacted appropriately and promptly to what they could see in those pens.

Answer: Yes

Question 14: Emergency Response and the Role of the South Yorkshire Metropolitan Ambulance Service (SYMAS)

After the crush in the west terrace had begun to develop, was there any error or omission by the ambulance service (SYMAS) which caused or contributed to the loss of lives in the disaster?
Jurors were advised to consider factors including the overall number of casualties requiring assessment and/or treatment and the effect of the mass casualty situation on the arrangements that could reasonably be made.

Answer: Yes