The Hillsborough inquests commenced on March 31, 2014 and are the subject of reporting restrictions that have been imposed by the Attorney General's office. Liverpool Football Club is respectful of these restrictions and will therefore only be making available updates from other media channels for the duration of the inquest.
The report below - and the witness testimony contained within it - does not necessarily reflect the views of Liverpool FC. Please be aware that the reports on these pages will contain evidence about the day of the disaster which may be distressing.
To view archive reports from each day of the inquest hearings, click here.
Courtesy of the Press Association - April 20
A former senior South Yorkshire Police officer has told a jury an "idiot" colleague had "destroyed" his "unblemished character" with claims that he said the blame for Hillsborough should be placed on drunken, ticketless supporters.
Ex-chief superintendent Terry Wain spoke of his anger about evidence given last month to the inquests into the deaths of 96 Liverpool fans.
Former inspector Clive Davis told the hearing about a briefing Mr Wain allegedly gave to CID officers two days after the disaster.
Mr Davis said: "His words were, and I can almost remember them verbatim, that 'we were going to put the blame for this disaster where it belongs - on the drunken, ticketless Liverpool fans'.''
He said Mr Wain told the meeting at police HQ in Sheffield that officers should drive along the M62 to look for discarded cans of beer and should also speak to pub landlords and neighbours around Sheffield Wednesday's ground about the behaviour of Liverpool fans on the day of the FA Cup semi-final on April 15 1989.
Mr Davis added that the "very high-level briefing" amounted to "like a call to arms, almost".
Giving evidence today in Warrington, Mr Wain denied any of the above and said he did not even become involved in any Hillsborough investigation until April 24.
When counsel of the inquest, Jonathan Hough QC, turned to the subject of Mr Davis's evidence, Mr Wain: "I'd rather you didn't mention him."
Mr Hough said: "Mr Davis has given an account to the jury of you opening that meeting by declaring the intention to place the blame for the disaster on drunken and ticketless Liverpool supporters. Did you say any such thing either at a meeting on April 17 or any other meeting?"
Mr Wain says: "No, I did not."
He said he did not get officers to go out and get evidence to support that case and added he did not know Mr Davis at the time
He added: "I feel angry. I do. Thirty-two of years unblemished character and an idiot like that comes and destroys it."
The jury heard that Mr Wain was tasked with overseeing South Yorkshire Police's response to the disaster for the public inquiry carried out by Lord Justice Taylor.
It included overseeing the gathering of written accounts by South Yorkshire Police officers.
Addressing a report he gathered for the Taylor Inquiry, Mr Wain agreed part of it expressed a view about the contribution of alcohol to the late arrival of fans.
It said a number of fans arriving at the Leppings Lane turnstiles were under the influence of alcohol - "some quite heavily".
Mr Wain accepted it read as general comment and there was no specific statement to support that in the report but he pointed out that the statements gathered by this team reflected that.
"There were too many statements saying the same thing," he explained.
"If it was not in the statement it was not in the report. Nobody was instructed what to put in the statements in any way, shape or form. They were self-written."
Mr Hough said: "The jury have heard that a number of officers included in their statements comments and observations which were critical of more senior officers.
"There were some examples of some of those observations being edited out?"
Mr Wain replied: "Yes, I understand that now."
Mr Hough said the report included commentary on fans which used "emotive language like 'animals'".
Mr Wain said: "It is in the statement. It's quoted ... a bit emotive."
He denied there was a deliberate decision to include criticism of supporters and exclude criticism of the police.
Mr Hough asked why the report said senior officers were "suddenly overwhelmed" by the arrival of fans a few minutes before kick-off when the jury had already heard evidence that congestion outside started much earlier.
Mr Wain replied: "Perhaps a few minutes is wrong."
Mr Hough said: "An exaggeration?"
"Yes," said the witness.
Mr Hough continued: "An understatement?"
"Yes," repeated Mr Wain.
Mr Hough said: "Of course the effect of that understatement is to suggest that senior officers did not have the time to react properly.
"This particularly seeks to defend senior officers by portraying the situation as sudden, unexpected and unforeseeable."
Mr Wain said: "That is the picture that is being painted, yes."
The report also said in its summary how many fans, being "worse for wear, embarked upon a determined course of action, the aim of which was getting to Hillsborough football stadium at all costs irrespective of any danger to property or more importantly the lives and safety of others".
Mr Hough said: "Once again this is going much further than a mere neutral account of the facts or even a summary of a few officers' evidence, is it not?
"These are summary observations which are, broadly speaking, defensive of South Yorkshire Police?"
Mr Wain said: "That appears to be, yes."
The witness said he could also not explain why his the report painted a positive picture of the police's emergency response after the disaster when some officers had included criticisms in their statements about what other officers did or did not do.
Peter Wilcock QC, representing some of the bereaved families, put it to Mr Wain that "your job was to make sure that they (SYP) hit back".
The witness replied: "Definitely not."
Mr Wilcock said: "Are you now saying that it is ridiculous to suggest that you did anything to blame Liverpool fans in your dealings with the Taylor Inquiry?"
Mr Wain replied: "Me personally, no. All I did was to reflect what was in the statements. Nothing more. There were one or two areas of exaggeration, or looked to be points of exaggeration. I accept them, yes."
He also denied that at the time of his report he knew there was a past procedure known to senior officers of South Yorkshire Police (SYP) about blocking the central tunnel to the Leppings Lane terrace in the event of congestion.
Earlier, Mr Wain said that following legal advice from the force's solicitors, Hammond Suddards, it was agreed that senior officers on duty and those officers deployed at the Leppings Lane end of the ground would fill in self-written accounts on blank pieces of paper for the purpose of his report.
Mr Wain said the process ran parallel to the investigation by West Midlands Police, the outside force called in to probe the SYP response to the disaster, and he understood the accounts would be confidential.
Areas covered on the forms were: "What was the mood of the fans?", "Actions of stewards, were they doing their jobs?", "Was there a breakdown in radio transmissions?", "Did you handle any bodies" and "Officers should include in their statements their fears, feelings and observations".
Mr Wain accepted there was not a reference on the form asking officers to make any comment about other officers but he denied that was a deliberate omission.
West Midlands Police went on to request copies of the self-written accounts for its own inquiry, the inquest heard, which led to lawyers for SYP advising that they would need to read every one of around 100 accounts and make alterations if needed.
Mr Hough asked: "Did you have any concern about the proposed process of officers' accounts being vetted and possibly amended?"
Mr Wain replied: "It didn't cause me any concern to be quite honest. It was coming from legal advice ... solicitors."
Mr Hough asked: "Had you ever had any experience of lawyers amending police officers' statements?"
Mr Wain said: "Probably over the years ... it is really difficult to answer that one to be quite honest."
The barrister went on: "Did it occur to you that one option, rather than having the lawyers review and amend the statements, was to ask the officers concerned to produce statements which complied with the Criminal Justice Act form and the evidential requirements that you would have imposed as a detective?"
Mr Wain replied: "This was the legal advice being proffered. I mean nobody had much of an idea about a public inquiry and we were very much dependent on the lawyers."
He said at the time he thought the purpose of the vetting was to remove any "irrelevant material".
Mr Wain said he was not aware of evidence heard by the jury that some of the self-written accounts had been vetted by other SYP officers without reference to the lawyers.
He was also unaware of concerns expressed at the time by some officers about alterations to their accounts before they were handed to West Midlands Police.
The hearing was adjourned until tomorrow when Mr Wain will continue to give evidence.