Appointing David Duckenfield weeks before Hillsborough disaster was ‘reasonable decision’, says senior officer

Former chief superintendent David Duckenfield arrives at the Hillsborough Inquest in Warrington to give evidence last month
Former chief superintendent David Duckenfield arrives at the Hillsborough Inquest in Warrington to give evidence last month
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A retired senior officer has defended recommending David Duckenfield for a promotion that resulted in him being match commander at the Hillsborough disaster.

Former assistant chief constable Kenneth Anderson told the new inquests into the deaths of 96 Liverpool fans it had been a ‘reasonable decision at the time’.

Mr Anderson said the decision to move Mr Duckenfield’s predecessor Brian Mole and promote Mr Duckenfield had been made by chief constable Peter Wright.

Mr Duckenfield’s promotion to chief superintendent took effect on March 27, 1989, shortly before the semi-final on April 15.

Mr Anderson said Mr Duckenfield had an ‘excellent’ CV.

He said there were no concerns about Mr Duckenfield’s lack of experience of policing football games.

He said it would have been reasonable to ask Mr Mole to act as match commander on the day if it had been felt necessary.

Mr Anderson added Mr Duckenfield should have raised concerns about his ability if he had any.

He said: “One would have expected if Mr Duckenfield didn’t feel able to do it, that he would have raised that.”

When Mr Duckenfield gave evidence to the hearings last month, he said he ‘wasn’t the best man for the job on the day’.

He added: “It didn’t cross my mind to say, I’m not up to the job, I just got on with it. With hindsight - it was a serious mistake.”