West Yorkshire Police Chief Constable Sir Norman Bettison faces question by his own authority over role in Hillsborough tragedy

Sir Norman Bettison
Sir Norman Bettison

THE Chief Constable of West Yorkshire Police is facing questions from his own police authority over his role in the Hillsborough disaster.

Sir Norman Bettison attended the game as an off duty inspector with South Yorkshire Police and was involved in an internal inquiry into the 1989 tragedy, which claimed the lives of 92 Liverpool FC fans.

This week he was referred to the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) by West Yorkshire Police Authority following allegations he supplied misleading information.

The IPCC will also investigate complaints about a public statement he made last Thursday when he said the Liverpool fans’ behaviour made policing at the tragedy “harder than it needed to be”.

And this morning (Friday) he attended an authority meeting at George Street, in Wakefield.

But he refused to answer any questions regarding his position as he went into the meeting.

In the meeting authority chairman Mark Burns-Williamson confirmed the authority had referred Sir Norman to the IPCC, but said members would put questions to him in private.

Mr Burns-Williamson said that as soon as the authority received a complaint against the chief constable “he was immediately referred to the IPCC”.

Mr Burns-Williamson added that there was a “pressing need to maintain public confidence in the force”.

The meeting had been scheduled months before the findings of the Hillsborough Panel’s Report.

Victims’ families have said Sir Norman should quit and are calling for him to be stripped of his knighthood following the publication of a damning report into the events of April 15, 1989, when Liverpool played Nottingham Forest in an FA cup semi-final.

Sir Norman has denied any wrongdoing.