Hillsborough jury retire to start considering verdicts after two-year inquest

The Hillsborough disaster unfolds
The Hillsborough disaster unfolds

The jury in the inquests into the deaths of 96 Liverpool fans at the 1989 Hillsborough disaster has retired to consider its verdicts, more than two years since the hearings began.

The seven women and three men of the jury retired on Wednesday afternoon to consider 14 key questions set out by the Coroner Sir John Goldring, in a 33 page questionnaire, including determining if match commander David Duckenfield is responsible for the unlawful killing of the fans by gross negligence manslaughter.

The hearings into Britain’s worst sporting disaster first began on March 31 2014, at a specially built courtroom in Warrington, Cheshire, with dozens of relatives of the 96 attending each of the more than 300 days the court has sat at Bridgewater Place at the town’s Birchwood Park business park.

Sir John concluded his summing-up of the evidence which he first began in January, before making his final remarks to the jury before it retired.

Across the courtroom dozens of relatives of the 96 listened in silence.

In his closing remarks, Sir John reminded the jurors how they should approach the evidence they had seen and heard.

He said: “You decide the case only on the evidence you heard in court.

Put out of your mind anything you may have read, heard or discussed about the disaster.

“Decide the case dispassionately on the evidence. Put emotion to one side.

“Do not make critical findings unless the facts justify them.

“On the other hand, do not shrink from making such findings if they do.

“You decide what evidence you accept and what evidence you reject.”