Under-fire Chief Constable not expected to return to South Yorkshire Police
Under-fire Chief Constable David Crompton is not expected to return to South Yorkshire Police following his suspension.
The police chief, who joined the force in 2012, was due to retire in November but was yesterday suspended from his post in the wake of the inquests into the 96 lives lost in the Hillsborough disaster in 1989.
South Yorkshire’s Police and Crime Commissioner Alan Billings said he had ‘no choice’ but to suspend Chf Con Crompton.
He said there had been an erosion of ‘trust and confidence’ in South Yorkshire Police in the wake of the inquests which ruled the Liverpool fans were ‘unlawfully killed’.
Dr Billings said there had been ‘public calls for the Chief Constable’s resignation from a number of quarters, including local MPs’.
“I am not envisaging the Chief Constable returning,” he told reporters.
Shadow Home Secretary Andy Burnham called for the resignation in a blistering speech in the House of Commons yesterday.
He claimed that South Yorkshire Police had gone back on its 2012 public apology following the release of the Hillsborough Independent Panel report and engaged in an ‘adversial battle’ at the fresh inquests .
He said: “Shamefully, the cover-up continued in this Warrington court room. Millions of pounds of public money were spent re-telling discredited lies against Liverpool supporters.
“Lawyers for retired officers threw disgusting slurs around; those for today’s force tried to establish that others were responsible for the opening of the gate. If the police had chosen to maintain their apology, this inquest would have been much shorter. But they did not, and they put the families through hell once again.”
He accused South Yorkshire Police of ‘protecting itself above protecting people’.
South Yorkshire Police, South Yorkshire Ambulance service, as well as a number of individuals including David Duckenfield, match commander on the day of the disaster, could face criminal proceedings over the deaths.
The Crown Prosecution Service is expected to receive files of evidence at the end of the year before considering whether to bring charges.
At the close of the inquest on Tuesday the jury found that blunders by South Yorkshire’s police and ambulance services ‘caused or contributed to’ the deaths of the 96 Liverpool fans.
The jury also concluded that Liverpool supporters were not to blame for what happened.
Following the verdicts, Mr Crompton admitted the force got the policing of the match ‘catastrophically wrong’, and ‘unequivocally’ accepted the inquest’s conclusions.
He previously apologised in 2012 after the damning Hillsborough Independent Panel report concluded a major cover-up had taken place in an effort by police and others to avoid the blame for what happened.
In a statement released on Wednesday SYP said it had not sought to defend its failures in the final inquest, but added: “Nevertheless, these failures had to be put into the context of other contributory factors.”