Former mounted police officer will NOT face Hillsborough charges

Fans at the Hillsborough disaster.
Fans at the Hillsborough disaster.

A mounted police officer, who was on duty during the Hillsborough disaster, will not face criminal charges over allegations he falsified an account that his police horse was burnt by a cigarette outside the stadium.

The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) has announced that it would take no further action against the former South Yorkshire Police officer who was seen to be lashing out at fans while in the saddle on horseback before the Liverpool versus Nottingham Forest FA Cup semi-final at Hillsborough, on April 15 1989.

The CPS also announced that it would not be in the public interest to charge a civilian farrier who it was alleged had falsely claimed to have seen serious injuries to the horse, and so supporting the officer’s account.

Both individuals were investigated by the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) after a complaint was received from a group of Liverpool fans in May 2015 and a file of evidence was provided to the CPS in July 2017.

IPCC Deputy Chair Rachel Cerfontyne said: “Following a very through and detailed investigation by our dedicated Hillsborough team, we referred a significant body of evidence to the CPS for their consideration in July 2017.

“The CPS has decided not to charge either subject following our investigation. It was vitally important that allegations of such a serious nature were investigated robustly.

“Following the conclusion of all criminal proceedings relating to the Hillsborough disaster, we will consider whether any former police officers, including all of those referred to the CPS for charging decisions, would have had cases to answer for misconduct if they were still serving. The evidence supporting these findings will be set out in a final investigation report.”