Hillsborough victim told friend in crush - ‘We need to get out of here’

Peter Tootle, one of the victims of the Hillsborough disaster. Picture courtesy of the Liverpool Echo.

Peter Tootle, one of the victims of the Hillsborough disaster. Picture courtesy of the Liverpool Echo.

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One of the victims of the Hillsborough disaster told his friend, ‘We need to get out of here,’ as they were caught in crushing on the terraces.

The new inquests into the deaths of 96 Liverpool supporters at the 1989 FA Cup semi-final heard evidence about the final movements of 21-year-old Peter Tootle.

Peter and his friend Colin Frodsham entered the ground after Exit Gate C was opened in the minutes before the 3pm kick-off.

Mr Frodsham said in a statement: “The crush carried me and Peter towards a tunnel immediately in front of us. By now my feet had been lifted off the ground and I was being carried along.”

He said that about 30 seconds after getting on to the terrace there was a surge of pressure and they were forced forward to around eight feet from the perimeter fence.

Mr Frodsham said the last time he saw Peter he was conscious.

“We just said to each other we need to get out of here. That was the last thing we said to each other,” he said.

Mr Frodsham fell unconscious in the crush and was woken by another fan slapping his face to bring him around.

He then saw a police officer trying to give Peter a ‘kiss of life’ but being unable to revive him.

Mark George, representing Peter’s family, said Mr Tootle’s face was later covered with a bin bag in the stadium gym.

John Frend, a South Yorkshire Police officer, said that was not his recollection and he believed it was his anorak that was used to cover Peter’s face.

He said: “As far as I’m aware my coat was used.”

Peter’s death was confirmed by a doctor at 3.54pm and his body identified the following morning by his father.

The inquests continue.