Fan tells Hillsborough jury there were ‘empty’ pens near crush spot

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A Liverpool FC fan climbed out of an overcrowded central terrace pen to an adjoining one which was ‘quite empty’, the inquest into the Hillsborough tragedy heard.

Ian Devine said pen 2 in the Leppings Lane end at the 1989 FA Cup semi-final was ‘not even remotely full’ compared to pen 3 which he entered five minutes before kick-off on April 15.

He said the area outside the turnstiles was congested when he arrived at the match at 2.30pm and police on horseback were pushing the crowd back.

Mr Devine climbed into pen 2 from pen 3 where the fatal crush developed after seeing others doing the same.

He said he later saw fans being pulled into the stand above and heard ‘cries and screams’.