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Hillsborough trial: Ex-policeman breaks down in court | UK News

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A retired police officer broke down in court as he described a lack of control at the Hillsborough disaster.

Alan Ramsden paused to compose himself after being asked to describe the scene.

When asked by a barrister how he was feeling as the disaster unfolded, he told jurors at Preston Crown Court: “At the time I felt a bit useless, I don’t know if the situation caught us napping.

“We were looking for some guidance. There were one or two officers trying to bring some semblance of control.”

He said one superintendent, John Nesbit, did seem to take hold of the situation and give officers jobs to do.

The match commander on the day, Chief Superintendent David Duckenfield, denies a charge of gross negligence in relation to 95 of the 96 people who died.

Sheffield Wednesday’s ex-club secretary Graham Mackrell denies two charges related to alleged safety breaches.

Mr Ramsden told the court earlier that Liverpool supporters arriving at the 1989 FA Cup semi-final were orderly.

He said: “We expected a more riotous type of supporter but they were like a Sunday club.”

The former policeman said he had received a radio message at about 3.08pm requesting all officers to go onto the pitch.

He told the court: “I was approached by one fan… and he said something like, ‘it’s terrible in there, people are dying, people are dead’.

“I just did not believe him. He pushed me, cajoled me, dragged me to look and as I approached the Leppings Lane end… I will never forget.

“There were young faces on the wire mesh pleading (for us) to rescue them. But we couldn’t. I was in shock, traumatised, pulling at the wire.”

The trial continues.

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