Doherty/Fleming Inquest: RUC officer told not to shoot at people with masks

Danny Doherty and William Fleming were shot dead the SAS in December 1984

A former member of the RUC’s Divisional Mobile Support Unit told an inquest into the deaths of two Derry men shot dead by the SAS in the grounds of Gransha Hospital on December 6 1984 that as he moved into the grounds of the hospital they were told not to shoot at people with masks.

The witness described as PW6 told the hearing into the deaths of William Fleming (19) from the Waterside and Daniel Doherty (23) from Creggan that he had been ‘on stand by’ on at least one occasion prior to December 6 1984 in connection, he believed, with the same incident.

He said he was not told anything as to why they were on stand by.

On the morning in question he said he was on stand by close to Gransha Hospital when they received instructions to go to the hospital grounds.

He said that as they were on their way there he was told ‘If you see people with masks on do not open fire’.

The witness said as they entered the grounds a vehicle passed them and one of the men in that vehicle could be seen removing a balaclava.

He said that vehicle did not stop and proceeded away from the scene.

The inquest heard that this witness said he alighted from his vehicle and saw two bodies and a motorbike.

He said neither of the dead men were wearing helmets and he also noticed a Ruger pistol lying on the ground that he assumed was a military issue weapon.

PW6 said he then set about making the scene secure.

The hearing continues.

Derry Now