96 football fans were crushed to death and a further 766 injured in the Hillsborough disaster in April 1989. Following the tragedy, evidence came to light that the deaths resulted from grossly reckless actions by senior police officers.
The CPS declined to file involuntary manslaughter charges due to insufficient evidence. The victims families therefore took control of the proceedings to get justice by bringing a private prosecution against 2 senior police officers: Chief Superintendent David Duckenfield and Superintendent Bernard Murray who had given the order to open a gate to allow 100s more fans to enter the standing terraces which exacerbated the crush.
A judge approved the private prosecution moving forward to a jury trial in July 2000. Although Bernard Murray was acquitted and the jury unable to reach a verdict on David Duckenfield, the trial placed the Hillborough disaster firmly in public eye and represented the first time the case had been articulated in full. The families of the victims got their day in court.
Hillsborough campaigners finally got justice in April 2016 when jurors concluded that fans were not to blame for the dangerous situation and the police contributed to loss of lives by error or omission.