Coroner finds the 10 victims of the Ballymurphy massacre were innocent…

After nearly 50 years the families of those killed in Ballymurphy have state vindication of what they knew all along – their family members were completely innocent.

From the BBC report:

The inquest, which began in November 2018, examined the deaths in and around the Ballymurphy area of west Belfast in August 1971.

The shootings happened after an operation in which paramilitary suspects were detained without trial.

Victims included a priest trying to help the wounded and a mother of eight.

Nine of the 10 victims were killed by the Army, the coroner said.

The coroner could not definitively say who shot the tenth victim, John McKerr.

Mrs Justice Keegan, who delivered her findings over the course of more than two hours, said the deaths took place during Northern Ireland’s Troubles in a “highly charged and difficult environment”.

But she concluded: “What is very clear, is that all of the deceased in the series of inquests were entirely innocent of wrongdoing on the day in question.”

The killings happened over three days immediately following the introduction of internment – the arrest and detention of paramilitary suspects without trial.

The victims were:

  • Father Hugh Mullan, 38, and Francis Quinn, 19, were shot in an area of open ground behind Springfield Park
  • Daniel Teggart, 44, Joan Connolly, 44, Noel Phillips, 19 and Joseph Murphy, 41, were shot near the Henry Taggart Army base near Springfield Park
  • John Laverty, 20, and Joseph Corr, 43, were shot at separate points at the top of Whiterock Road
  • Edward Doherty, 31, was shot at the corner of Brittons Parade and Whiterock Road
  • John McKerr, 49, was shot outside the old Corpus Christi Parish

I know some of you can not resist going down the route of whataboutery. We all know there are lots of families of victims all across Northern Ireland, many who will never get justice. But for one day maybe acknowledge the pain and long struggle of one group.

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