soldier accused of killing a teen in the course of the Troubles has died, an announcement from the sufferer’s household has mentioned.
Daniel Hegarty, a 15-year-old labourer, was shot twice within the head after encountering an Army patrol in Londonderry’s Creggan space within the early hours of July 31 1972.
His household mentioned they take no delight within the information that the person who had dealing with the prosect of occurring trial accused of homicide, Soldier B, had died.
In 2021 the Public Prosecution Service introduced that it might not be prosecuting Soldier B.
However that call was challenged by the household and it was quashed by the Courtroom of Enchantment in August.
In an announcement launched on Tuesday, Daniel’s household mentioned they’d been knowledgeable by the PPS that Soldier B died on Thursday.
The Hegarty household assertion added: “We take no delight within the demise of Soldier B.
“…We are going to provide a Mass for Soldier B as nicely.
“Our mom did the identical in 1972.”
The household have accused the PPS of dragging out the case and mentioned they by no means actually wished to prosecute Soldier B.
SDLP chief Colum Eastwood mentioned there had been institutional failings within the Hegarty case and that it confirmed the UK authorities’s technique for coping with legacy points wouldn’t work.
“Daniel Hegarty was shot and killed greater than 50 years in the past.
“It’s a damning indictment on this society that his household have needed to battle a lifetime for fact, justice and accountability.
“And it’s additional proof that the British Authorities’s method to legacy, shutting down justice, won’t ever work for individuals who have misplaced essentially the most,” he mentioned.
“There have been critical institutional failings on this case which have badly let the Hegarty household down.
“The PPS determination to drop the case in 2021 was a major low and compelled this household to battle once more for his or her proper to justice.
“The Hegarty household have once more demonstrated grace of their response to this information.
“There is no such thing as a victory for anybody in any of this.
“Households just like the Hegartys deserve the reality they usually deserve justice.
“That needs to be the main focus of political leaders throughout these islands.”
Director of Public Prosecutions Stephen Herron mentioned Daniel’s household had been knowledgeable of Soldier B’s demise “on the earliest alternative”.
“The place the PPS is made conscious of the demise of a defendant, that’s the finish of any potential prosecution in relation to them,” he mentioned.
“I admire that that is a particularly troublesome time for the household of Daniel Hegarty who’ve hoped and campaigned for a lot of a long time to see a legal justice final result on this case.”
He added: “This explicit case introduced issues and an evolving image when it comes to the related evidential and public curiosity issues.
“These resulted in a sequence of judicial assessment challenges to choices that had been taken and we recognise the extra misery brought about to the Hegarty household by the protracted nature of the varied units of authorized proceedings.”
Mr Herron mentioned that the PPS decision-making in relation to Daniel’s case was “undertaken in good religion”.