A fresh inquest into the murder of a mother-of-six by the British Army in 1971 has just been ordered by the Attorney General – news that’s been given cautious welcome by her children.
Kathleen Thompson was just 47 years-old in November 1971 when she was killed instantly by a shot to the chest while in her own backyard in Creggan, feet from where her children were sleeping.
She’d gone out to alert neighbours to an army raid happening nearby.
Three of Mrs Thompson’s children, son Erne and daughters Patricia and Minty, revealed news of the inquest at the Pat Finucane Centre in Derry this week.
“We are delighted to get to this stage,” daughter Patricia Murphy said. “I hope now that they’ll conduct a proper investigation.
“But we can’t pin our hopes on anything. We’ve been let down too many times
“This whole city knows my mother was an innocent woman.
“We know exactly what happened, but we need the record put straight.”
Another daughter, Minty Thompson, added: “The past is the present, we are living it, and we are going nowhere until it is sorted. We just want the truth.”
Madden & Finucane Solicitors, who represent the Thompson family, received a letter on Tuesday confirming that the Attorney General John F Larkin QC has directed that a new inquest be held into Kathleen Thompson’s murder. The only investigation at the time was an internal army one that lasted two hours, with four soldiers questioned.