Remembering how the Sun newspaper covered the Hillsborough tragedy 27 years ago

Bethan McKernan@mck_beth
Tuesday 26 April 2016 15:10
news

After 27 years there is finally justice for the families of those killed in the Hillsborough disaster as the inquest jury has found the 96 victims were killed unlawfully.

The jury of nine heard more than two years of evidence and considered 14 questions to decide that Liverpool fans were not at fault and that police failures and the stadium's construction were responsible for the April 1989 crush during the FA Cup semi-final.

As the decision that police errors at the turnstiles and gates and police delay in declaring a major incident were at fault for the tragedy was read out, families in the courtroom's gallery were seen hugging each other. This was the reaction in Liverpool:

The disaster remains one of the worst sports-related tragedies in the world.

As families belatedly gain some closure today, some are remembering how the pain of the bereaved and survivors was dragged out by several inquests and mudslinging by police who sought to minimise their responsibility for the deaths.

Claims by the Sun newspaper in the aftermath of the disaster that the behaviour of Liverpool fans contributed to the chaos led to a boycott of the paper in Merseyside by shops, football fans and readers.

The journalist who wrote the story, Harry Arnold, told the BBC in a documentary he was "aghast" when he saw how the front page had been edited the next day. He said the claims had been originally written in a "fair and balanced way" and had been allegations rather than statements of fact.

The Sun apologised for the story after an inquest was reopened in 2012, and has not responded to requests for comment on Tuesday.

The knowledge that certain police documents were not available to the original inquiry and the Sun's reporting had left questions hanging over what really happened since the day the disaster happened.

Now the families of the 96 victims finally have answers after what has been dubbed "the greatest miscarriage of justice of our times".

More: Hillsborough disaster inquest live: Jury rules 96 Liverpool fans were 'unlawfully killed' in 1989

More: People are sharing this deeply moving BBC report from the aftermath of Hillsborough

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