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Report of the The Bloody Sunday Inquiry volume 2

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Re: Report of the The Bloody Sunday Inquiry volume 2

Post  Guest on Wed 16 Jun - 18:14

16.37 According to the RMP statement of Lieutenant 136,1 at approximately 1500 hours a 30-strong crowd approached the barrier and began to stone it. The soldiers at the barrier made no response. Some of the crowd took photographs of the soldiers at Barrier 16. Some time later, the crowd ran off down Waterloo Street “towards the Rossville Flats”.2 The written statement of Lieutenant 136 to this Inquiry records that the crowd was made up of about 30 youths, who threw stones and bottles.3

1 B1836

2 B1836
3 B1838.003


16.38 In his statement to the RMP, the second in command of the platoon, Sergeant 137, recorded that the crowd that appeared at the junction of Castle Gate and Waterloo Street threw stones, bottles and metal objects. He continued, “They lasted for about 20 minutes and the crowd moved off in the direction of 2 Platoon ‘A’ Coy of my unit ”.1 Corporal 103 of the Royal Engineers told the RMP that the barrier was stoned by a group of 20 youths, who then took “ammunition in the form of paveing stones back in the direction of the flats”.2

1 B1839
2 B1677


16.39 Lance Corporal 107 made no mention in his RMP statement of any rioting at Barrier 16.1 That statement does record “minor rioting by about 30 youths who threw missiles at 2 Pl [Platoon] location on the far side of gate in Waterloo Street. The youths threw a gas grenade at the troops, deployed in Waterloo Street. They fired rubber bullets at the youths, they later dispersed ”.2 This is the fullest 1972 description of the rioting at Barrier 15 given by any soldier at Barrier 16. However, the suggestion that soldiers at Barrier 15 fired rubber bullets is at odds with a substantial body of 1972 evidence, and in our view is inaccurate. The written statement to this Inquiry of this witness does not add anything further on this point.3 Rifleman 153 was the only other soldier deployed at Barrier 16 who gave a statement to the RMP. That statement makes no reference to rioting at Barrier 16.4 In his written statement to this Inquiry, Lance Corporal INQ 614 identified himself as a member of 3 Platoon. He stated that his platoon’s position had to be defended against rioters, who pelted it with bricks and bottles.5

1 B1714

2 B1714

3 B1716.001
4 B1926

5 C614.2


16.40 A section of six police officers under the command of Sergeant H Johnston was deployed to Castle Gate. The RUC statement of Sergeant Johnston records that “During the afternoon groups of youths, some with cloths over their faces, passed up and down the street below us. Stones and bottles were thrown at intervals at us and we had to take cover. We had a very restricted view of these youths. The army took no action against these youths.”1 Similar descriptions appear in the 1972 accounts provided by the other police officers, namely Constable TN Blair;2 Constable AT Campbell;3 Constable W Hunter;4 Constable AT Moore;5 and Constable SN Whiteman.6

1 JJ2.1

2 JB8.1

3 JC3.1
4 JH12.1

5 JM50.1

6 JW7.1


16.41 While the Historical Record of 22 Lt AD Regt refers to rioting at Barriers 12 to 15, it makes no mention of any rioting at Barrier 16.1

1 G133.887

16.42 In our view, though some missiles may have been directed at the soldiers at Barrier 16, there was no serious rioting at that barrier.
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Re: Report of the The Bloody Sunday Inquiry volume 2

Post  Guest on Wed 16 Jun - 18:16

Report of the The Bloody Sunday Inquiry
- Volume II - Chapter 17





Machine Gun Platoon and Abbey Taxis
Chapter 17: Machine Gun Platoon and Abbey Taxis

17.1 As we have already observed, at about 1540 hours Major Loden (the Commander of Support Company, 1 PARA), ordered Machine Gun Platoon of this company forward from its Assault Position in Queen’s Street to the derelict building Abbey Taxis. This was the building with nine windows facing east onto the waste land where Richardson’s shirt factory used to be.




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Re: Report of the The Bloody Sunday Inquiry volume 2

Post  Guest on Wed 16 Jun - 18:17

17.2 The exact route that Machine Gun Platoon used to get to Abbey Taxis is in some doubt, as the evidence is conflicting and it is difficult to tie in the verbal accounts with such photographs as exist of the area. However, we are reasonably confident that the route started on the western side of the Presbyterian church, and involved using an alleyway that ran behind the wall to the west of the waste ground, climbing one or two walls, and getting into Abbey Taxis through a window at the level of the first floor, ie the level above the ground floor. The route is indicated by the red dotted line on the map below.

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Re: Report of the The Bloody Sunday Inquiry volume 2

Post  Guest on Wed 16 Jun - 18:17

17.3 It is unlikely that the soldiers went along the top of the wall to the west of the waste ground, as this could hardly be described (as Major Loden described it in his Diary of Operations) as a “concealed route”.1 Furthermore, at the time when Machine Gun Platoon was moving, there would have been many people in William Street who would have had a clear view of soldiers on this wall, but there is no persuasive evidence that the soldiers were seen by anyone on the march at this time. Private INQ 1553 (in a draft statement to this Inquiry that he approved but never signed) recorded, “As we were climbing over the roof, the rioting crowd in the street below saw us”.2 However, this soldier did not give oral evidence for medical reasons, and we are of the view that his recollection is probably inaccurate.

1 B2218
2 C1553.3


17.4 One of the photographs of the area shows Abbey Taxis from the west. This photograph was taken before 30th January 1972, as it shows houses to the north of the Rossville Flats that had been demolished by that day.

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Re: Report of the The Bloody Sunday Inquiry volume 2

Post  Guest on Wed 16 Jun - 18:18

17.5 If that part of the photograph showing Abbey Taxis is enlarged, it can be seen that the building has no roof or wall to the west.

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Re: Report of the The Bloody Sunday Inquiry volume 2

Post  Guest on Wed 16 Jun - 18:18

17.6 It is difficult to see from this enlargement whether there had been or remained any flooring or rafters at the first floor level, but the photograph is consistent with other aspects of the description of the building given to the Inquiry by Corporal A (a member of Machine Gun Platoon), who told us in his written evidence to this Inquiry that it was:1

“… like a shell of a house. There were some walls or parts of walls and some windows but with no glass. The roof was missing … Some of the interior walls had been knocked down. If you imagine a bombed out building with just a shell left standing around it or something that had been only partly demolished, then this is the type of building we were in … Although the building was derelict, I think the floor on which I stood was secure and made of brick.”


1 B20.002

17.7 Corporal A (in his oral evidence to this Inquiry),1 recalled that there was some sort of brick or concrete floor at the first floor level, but in his written statement for the Widgery Inquiry2 he recorded that, when he got into the building, he was standing on one of the broken-down interior walls, which in our view was more likely to be the case. Private B (another member of Machine Gun Platoon) in his written statement for the Widgery Inquiry3 recorded that there were no floors as such. What is clear is that, having entered the building at the first floor level, the soldiers had to climb or jump down to get to the ground floor, as there were no stairs.

1 Day 297/22-23

2 B8
3 B25


17.8 Sergeant INQ 441, the Commander of Machine Gun Platoon, told this Inquiry1 that he sent one of his men, he believed Corporal A, to what he described as a window on the second floor level looking south over William Street, in order to give cover for the remainder of the soldiers who had climbed or jumped down to the ground floor. However, the contemporary evidence shows that Corporal A was positioned at the first floor level, at or near the most southerly of the three windows that faced westwards towards the waste ground, which did give a view southwards across William Street. There appear to have been no windows in the side of Abbey Taxis facing directly south.

1 C441.4

17.9 At some stage, Private INQ 455, the Machine Gun Platoon signaller, fell off a wall and badly bruised his back. This might have been either immediately before entering Abbey Taxis or as he attempted to get down to ground level inside the building.1

1 C455.1; C441.4; Day 297/19-20; B20.009

17.10 Some members of Machine Gun Platoon thought that fewer than a dozen members of the platoon were sent to Abbey Taxis.1 However, it seems more likely that, with the exception of the drivers and a sentry for the APCs, Major Loden sent forward the whole platoon.2 Private 0053 and Private INQ 4394told us that they were the drivers and Private INQ 15445 that he was a sentry. The nominal roll6 records the strength of Machine Gun Platoon deployed on Operation Forecast (the Brigade order for 30th January 1972) as 21. Corporal INQ 513 was on the strength but did not recall being in Abbey Taxis.7 If he was right about this, the number deployed forward to this position would have been 17, though it might be that not all of them went inside the building.

1 Day 296/12; C1805.2; B37

2 B2219; WT12.8

3 B1373

4 C439.1
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Re: Report of the The Bloody Sunday Inquiry volume 2

Post  Guest on Wed 16 Jun - 18:19

Rioting near Abbey Taxis

17.11 There is some evidence that, as the main body of the march was coming down William Street and past the waste ground in front of the Presbyterian church at or shortly after 3.30pm, a few youths saw members of Mortar Platoon reconnoitring the wall to the east of the church and began shouting and jeering at them. They might have thrown a few stones at this time, but, if so, this was a short-lived and minor incident and provoked no response from the soldiers.1

1 AO56.13-14; AF26.8; AF26.2-3; AB68.1

17.12 At the same time as Major Loden had ordered Machine Gun Platoon forward to Abbey Taxis (at about 1540 hours) he deployed members of Mortar Platoon forward to cut the wire on the top of the wall to the east side of the Presbyterian church. The Mortar Platoon Commander (Lieutenant N) in turn deployed men (he said two but it might have been four) onto the flat roof of the GPO sorting office on the eastern side of the waste ground to cover the wire-cutting party. The GPO sorting office can be seen in the following photograph, taken after Bloody Sunday.
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Re: Report of the The Bloody Sunday Inquiry volume 2

Post  Guest on Wed 16 Jun - 18:19

17.13 This photograph also shows that on the south side of William Street, more or less opposite the waste ground to the side of Abbey Taxis, there was another area of waste ground that, as we have noted earlier, has been called the “laundry waste ground”, as it was once the site of Castle Laundry.

17.14 It was in the area of the waste ground next to Abbey Taxis, the laundry waste ground and that part of William Street dividing these two areas that there was rioting.

17.15 A large number of individuals gave evidence about the duration and severity of the rioting in this area, much of it conflicting. What must be borne in mind is that the situation on William Street at the time of this disorder was continuously changing; that the witnesses were widely dispersed and moving and looking in different directions; and that there is no relevant photographic or film evidence of the rioting with which witnesses’ memories could be jogged and tested. In these circumstances, it is unsurprising that accounts and recollections vary considerably.

17.16 Our consideration of the evidence as a whole leads us to conclude that it was not until shortly after 3.40pm, when the tail end of the march was passing the area, that any significant rioting took place. By this time, the main body of the march had more or less come to a stop at Aggro Corner, causing a bottleneck further west up William Street. The rioting at Barriers 12, 13 and 14 and the counter-measures employed by the soldiers at these barriers caused marchers and rioters to move back up William Street, where those at the tail end of the march were still standing or walking. Some people turned into the laundry waste ground toward Columbcille Court and Rossville Street to avoid the bottleneck and the trouble further down William Street. Others joined in or stopped to observe the rioting in the area of Abbey Taxis. The result was a fluid and confused situation, changing minute by minute, in which rioters and marchers intermingled and moved between various locations.

17.17 The first targets of the rioters on William Street were the soldiers on the GPO roof and beside the Presbyterian church.1 In response to the throwing of stones and similar objects, Private 112, who was positioned next to the church, fired baton rounds, and the soldiers on the GPO roof were ordered to draw back in order to move out of range of the rioters.2 Some civilians gave evidence in 1972 and to this Inquiry that one of these soldiers gesticulated at the crowd with his weapon as he moved.3,4 It was probably not until shortly after this outbreak of rioting that the soldiers in Abbey Taxis were spotted, since it would have taken those soldiers time to get to this position and (as observed above) there is no persuasive evidence that they were seen while getting there. Once they were seen, there were jeers and shouts from people present, such as “There are Brits in there. Get the bastards out! ” followed by rioters directing missiles at these soldiers.5

1 AH80.1; AH80.2; Day 71/142-145; AM431.8; AL3.1; AC4.2; Day 59/130-132; AD146.07

2 B1732.2; B766; B2219; B635; AC132.2; AM372.1;
H11.2-3; H11.13; AC150.1

3 AD106.1; H3.2; H3.8; H3.12; H11.2-3
4 One witness, Professor McCormack, thought that the soldier fired a live round in the direction of the rioters (AM136.14; Day 113/98-102). There is no military or other evidence to this effect and in our view this did not happen. Professor McCormack agreed in his oral evidence to this Inquiry that he could have been wrong about this (Day 113/102 and 126-127).

5 B20.3; AD80.2-3; AK17.9; AK17.25; Day 70/4-10;
AD120.25; AC105.1; Day 152/57-58; AM37.1; AM87.2; AM87.9; AM452.15; Day 63/69-70


17.18 Although there is some evidence that there were about 50 youths involved in rioting, others gave a smaller number, in some cases only very few.1 It is, of course, likely that the numbers actually stoning fluctuated from time to time. Weighing the whole of the voluminous and conflicting evidence on this matter, we conclude that, at its height, there were probably (at most) about 30 rioters in this area (and often many fewer actually stoning), though there were undoubtedly numbers of onlookers in the immediate area, as well as stragglers at the tail end of the march. The rioters collected stones, bricks, bottles and other debris from the area of the laundry waste ground, and then advanced onto William Street or even into the waste ground next to Abbey Taxis to throw what they had collected at the soldiers, before returning for more missiles. Some of those involved had previously been rioting at Barriers 12 and 14.

1 CS3.260-268; CS3.391-400; FS7.1038-1088; FS1.951-979; FR1.441-443

17.19 Support Company did not employ CS gas. There is evidence of CS gas in the area, but this had been used at Barrier 12 (and probably Barrier 13) and many witnesses (both civilians and soldiers) recalled that some of this had drifted westwards towards the waste ground area.

17.20 According to Major Loden’s Diary of Operations1 (and his written statement for the Widgery Inquiry2), his soldiers responded with rubber bullets, four fired by Machine Gun Platoon and two by Mortar Platoon. Major Loden told this Inquiry that he obtained this figure from an ammunition count at the end of the day.3 Corporal A told the Royal Military Police (RMP) and the Widgery Inquiry that he heard baton guns being fired by a member or members of his platoon while they were in Abbey Taxis, but even in 1972 he could not recall how many rounds were fired.4 Private B told the same sources that two soldiers were armed with baton guns inside Abbey Taxis, and his evidence was that both these soldiers fired; but he too provided no assistance on the number of rounds discharged.5

1 B2212

2 B2219

3 Day 342/33
4 B1; B8; B13

5 B21; B25; B31


17.21 According to Lance Corporal INQ 588’s written evidence to this Inquiry, he fired 20–30 baton rounds while he was in Abbey Taxis.1 According to Private 112’s evidence to this Inquiry, he fired 8–10 baton rounds from his position on a roof next to the Presbyterian church.2

1 C588.4
2 B1732.2


17.22 In our view, it is highly unlikely that Lance Corporal INQ 588 fired as many baton rounds as he now recalls. Even if he fired as quickly as he could, this number would have taken some time to discharge, it is doubtful that he would have been able to carry so many, and other members of Machine Gun Platoon make no reference to such a level of firing. We are also not persuaded, in view of Major Loden’s Diary of Operations,1 and the civilian evidence discussed below, that Private 112’s recollection of firing as many as 8–10 rounds is correct.

1 B2212

17.23 A number of civilians gave estimates as to how many baton rounds they recalled being fired in this area at this time. In assessing this evidence, it must be borne in mind, as noted above, that the march was in some disarray and the situation very fluid, with marchers and rioters moving between locations, some affected by the CS gas being discharged at Barrier 12 and possibly Barrier 13. In addition, differing levels of violence were directed at three different locations (namely the GPO roof, the side of the Presbyterian church and Abbey Taxis) at different times, while baton rounds were also being fired at about the same time from Barriers 12, 14 and possibly 13.

17.24 In such circumstances, it is not surprising that estimates vary, with some given long after the event. However, the overall impression that we gained from this evidence, was that only a few baton rounds were fired in the area under discussion. For example, in his NICRA statement, Padraig O’Mianain recorded that he was aware of three rubber bullets being fired.1 Patricia McGowan told this Inquiry that she was aware of “just a couple” being fired.2 Michael McGuinness told the Sunday Times that “a few” were fired, at least one from Abbey Taxis.3 James Wilson told NICRA that he heard one being fired, but in his evidence to us recalled that four or five had been fired.4 Patrick McCourt told this Inquiry that the soldiers in Abbey Taxis fired “one or two” rubber bullets at rioters.5 To our minds this evidence tends to support the number given by Major Loden in his 1972 evidence.

1 AO56.1

2 Day 61/163

3 AM283.11
4 AW17.1; Day 109/93-94

5 AM146.2


17.25 We are satisfied from the civilian evidence that it was very shortly after soldiers had fired the last of these baton rounds that Damien Donaghey and John Johnston were shot and wounded by Army gunfire.
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Re: Report of the The Bloody Sunday Inquiry volume 2

Post  Guest on Wed 16 Jun - 18:22

Report of the The Bloody Sunday Inquiry
- Volume II - Chapter 18




The shooting of Damien Donaghey and John Johnston


18.1 Damien Donaghey1 and John Johnston were shot and wounded when they were in the area known as the “laundry waste ground ”, which is to the south of William Street and roughly opposite the waste ground to the south of the Presbyterian church. The latter waste ground was sometimes known as the “factory waste ground ”. On the photograph and map below we have marked these two waste grounds. We have also marked the “Abbey Street waste ground ” which lay further west along William Street. Some witnesses confused the laundry waste ground with the Abbey Street waste ground.

1 In some documents Damien Donaghey’s name appears as Damien Donaghy.



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Re: Report of the The Bloody Sunday Inquiry volume 2

Post  Guest on Wed 16 Jun - 18:23

18.2 There is no doubt that these two civilians were hit by Army gunfire.

Biographical details

18.3 Damien Donaghey was 15 years old at the time of Bloody Sunday. He was known as “Bubbles ” by reason of his short, black, curly hair. He was an apprentice engineer, attending the local Government Training Centre. In the past he had rioted in William Street, and on this occasion he was taking part in the rioting near Abbey Taxis.

18.4 John Johnston was 59 years old at the time of Bloody Sunday. He was the manager of a local drapery store. He had been taking part in the march1 but on his way down William Street he saw clouds of CS gas ahead and decided to cut south across the laundry waste ground in order to visit an old man in the area of Glenfada Park. At no stage was he engaged in any form of disorderly activity.

1 AJ5.1

Medical evidence

18.5 Damien Donaghey suffered a gunshot wound in the front of his right thigh. The bullet passed through the thigh from front to back,1 causing comminuted fractures and leaving a three-inch exit wound on the posterolateral aspect of the thigh. No metal fragments were recovered from the wound. It should be noted that a contemporary medical report that states that the injury was to the left thigh was clearly in error.2

1 D767; E10.4 2D742

18.6 John Johnston suffered “through and through ” gunshot wounds to his right leg and his left shoulder and a graze to his right hand. A letter from Mr Bennett, the Consultant Surgeon at Altnagelvin Hospital, dated 7th February 1972, erroneously states that it was the right shoulder that was injured.1 Fragments of metal were found or observed in these wounds.2 Two fragments were removed.3 Dr Martin of the Department of Industrial Forensic Science recorded that one was a piece of a lead core, and the other of a copper jacket. Dr Martin concluded that the latter was consistent with the base of a 7.62mm calibre bullet that had been fired from a British Army SLR.4 The nature of his injuries suggests that John Johnston was injured by a bullet or bullets that had fragmented before hitting him.5

1 ED32.4; D808 4D804; E10.5

2 E10.5; ED32.4 5 E10.5; D808; AM105.5

3 ED32.3; D803; D804; ED32.4

18.7 John Johnston died in hospital on 16th June 1972 from an inoperable cerebral tumour. It was suggested that his death was caused or contributed to by a head injury sustained when he fell after being shot. However, the weight of the evidence (and John Johnston’s own account to the Sunday Times) is to the effect that although he stumbled, he did not in fact fall when he was hit. He was discharged from Altnagelvin Hospital on 10th February 1972 having made, according to the surgeon Mr Bennett, an “excellent recovery ” from “comparatively minor ” injuries.1 We are satisfied that John Johnston’s death was not the result of any of the wounds he sustained on Bloody Sunday.

1 D0790
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Re: Report of the The Bloody Sunday Inquiry volume 2

Post  Guest on Wed 16 Jun - 18:23

Where Damien Donaghey was shot

18.9 There is no doubt that Damien Donaghey was shot when he was in the laundry waste ground, but there is a conflict of evidence as to precisely where he was on this ground.

18.10 During the course of his oral evidence to this Inquiry Damien Donaghey insisted that he was positive that he had been shot when he was in the vicinity of the north-east corner of the laundry waste ground and that witnesses who had placed him at the north-west corner (where the Nook Bar was situated and some 25 yards from the north-east corner) were mistaken.1

1 Day 70/12; Day 70/24; Day 70/31; Day 70/32-34

18.11 We are satisfied that it is Damien Donaghey and not these witnesses1 whose recollection is mistaken; and that Damien Donaghey was at, or very close to, the Nook Bar corner when he was shot. This was also where John Johnston (in 1972 accounts considered below) recalled seeing him fall or seeing him on the ground. Some witnesses in their oral evidence to this Inquiry put him further to the east but in our view their recollections on this point were mistaken.

1 Billy McCartney AM87.10, Day 54/173; Padraig O’Mianain AO56.19, AO56.4; Gerry Duddy AD146.7, Day 59/133; Patrick O’Carolan AO6.6, Day 60/7; Michael McGuinness AM283.11, AM283.14, Day 64/154, Day 64/146; Thomas McDaid AM177.1; Anthony J Feeney AF7.6, Day 67/89; Charles James McGill AM230.7 position “7 ”; James Wilson AW17.15, Day 109/95-96; Peter Mullan AM450.12, AM450.6, Day 152/188; Eugene Lafferty Day 64/82; Tony McCourt Day 54/127, AM148.13.

Where John Johnston was shot

18.12 According to a statement he gave to the RUC on 2nd February 1972 at Altnagelvin Hospital, John Johnston heard the sound of rubber bullets coming from “where the burned-out factory is ” as he turned off William Street to go across the laundry waste ground.1“I was walking diagonally towards the entrance to Columbcille Court when I felt a blow to my right leg and left shoulder. At this stage I thought I had been hit by a rubber bullet. ” The “burned-out factory ” is in our view a reference to Abbey Taxis.

1 ED32.5

18.13 According to an interview John Johnston gave to the Sunday Times on 22nd February 1972,1 he had walked about two-thirds of the way across the laundry waste ground when “there was a big thump on the back of my right leg. I thought, my god, i’ve been whacked by a rubber bullet and went to hobble on, though I couldn’t move well. then a man shouted to me ‘Christ Mr Johnson [sic], you’re shot, your trousers are s[oa]king in blood’ .” John Johnston may well have felt a thump on the back of his right leg, though the medical evidence shows that the entry wound was at the front. The following map (prepared by the interviewer and possibly not seen by John Johnston) accompanied the notes of his interview with the Sunday Times.
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Re: Report of the The Bloody Sunday Inquiry volume 2

Post  Guest on Wed 16 Jun - 18:24

18.14 In the same interview John Johnston said “i can tell you with all truth, i never heard a shot nor any bomb before i was hit, not a solitary thing did I hear except th[e] rubber bullets and the stones… ”.

18.15 In his written statement for the Widgery Inquiry,1 John Johnston recorded:

“I saw soldiers, in firing positions, in a burnt out house almost opposite to this waste ground and north of William Street. As I was crossing this waste ground I turned and looked at the soldiers. I heard a crack of a shot. I was hit in the right leg near the hip and then another shot hit me in the left shoulder. At first I thought I was hit by rubber bullets. Another shot, which I believe was a ricochet, grazed my hand but I have no idea when this happened. Just before I was hit I saw a boy fall near the corner of the waste ground and William Street. ”


1 AJ5.3

18.16 John Johnston gave a similar account in his oral evidence to the Widgery Inquiry, except that on this occasion he referred to seeing the boy lying on the ground rather than seeing him fall.1 We should note in passing that during this evidence John Johnston denied that he had been on the march. This was untrue, but understandable in view of the mandatory minimum sentence of six months’ imprisonment that he faced for such an activity.

1 WT7.76

18.17 We are satisfied that John Johnston was shot when he was approximately in the position shown on the Sunday Times map, having turned towards the soldiers in Abbey Taxis. It should be noted, however, that this map also shows Damien Donaghey propped against a wall at the southern end of the eastern side of the laundry waste ground. According to the notes of the interview with the Sunday Times,1 John Johnston recalled that “… as i was helped away i could see a young lad lying propped up against the wall to my left (this was dogerty [sic], he had been moved I think) ”. If John Johnston was facing north when he saw this figure, rather than south as the journalist seems to have assumed, it was probably Damien Donaghey that he saw in the north-west corner. We are not persuaded that Damien Donaghey was ever propped up on a wall on the eastern side of the laundry waste ground and we are satisfied, for the reasons we have given, that when shot he was in fact at the north-west corner of the laundry waste ground, “the corner of the waste ground and William Street ” as John Johnston put it in his written statement for the Widgery Inquiry when describing what he had seen after he had turned to look at the soldiers in Abbey Taxis.2

1 AJ5.1 2 AJ5.3

18.18 There were a number of civilian witnesses who gave evidence about where John Johnston was when he was shot. Some put him in the same or much the same position as John Johnston did himself, while others give a variety of other positions. We did not find the latter evidence convincing or enough to undermine the account given by John Johnston. In many cases we doubt whether the witness actually saw John Johnston when or immediately after he was hit; and it must be borne in mind that after he was shot, John Johnston hobbled on or staggered about before people saw that he was hurt or came to his assistance.

18.19 A number of witnesses said that John Johnston was shot as he came to the assistance of the injured Damien Donaghey. Indeed Damien Donaghey himself in a Praxis Films Ltd interview in 1991 said that “Johnston went to lift me ”1 and in an interview in 1998 that “One of the men that came to lift me was John Johnston. He was shot, but I didn’t know till the day after. ”2 In his written statement to this Inquiry,3 he said that he had been told by someone else “some time afterwards … that John Johnston was bending down to lift me up when he too was shot ” and in his oral evidence to us,4 he agreed that he had no personal recollection of this, or indeed of anyone who had lifted him or had been shot. We are satisfied that John Johnston did not attempt to assist Damien Donaghey and that this story of him being shot as he did so must be regarded as one of the civilian myths that sprang up after Bloody Sunday, just as other myths did among the soldiers. Our reasons for reaching our view in this instance are the accounts John Johnston himself gave and in particular his answers when asked about this during the course of his oral evidence to the Widgery Inquiry:5
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Re: Report of the The Bloody Sunday Inquiry volume 2

Post  Guest on Wed 16 Jun - 18:24

“Q. Had you gone to assist the boy?

A. No.

Q. You did not turn round to him at all?

A. No. ”


1 AD120.25 4 Day 70/17

2 AD120.59 5 WT7/80

3 AD120.10

18.20 The second of these answers, read in the context of the totality of John Johnston’s evidence, is clearly a continued response to the first question. It should not be taken to mean that John Johnston denied looking back across William Street at all, which he agreed elsewhere that he had done shortly before he was shot.

18.21 We are satisfied that John Johnston was hit as or immediately after Damien Donaghey was shot. As will have been seen from the foregoing, the latter was John Johnston’s own recollection and in this he is supported by a number of civilian witnesses. Although there is disagreement among the civilian witnesses as to how many rounds they heard being fired, some recalling only one shot while others recalled up to three or possibly more, the most compelling evidence in our view was that all of the gunfire occurred in a brief or a very brief period of time. We do not find reliable the evidence of a few witnesses who suggested that tens of seconds, or even minutes, elapsed between the shooting of the two casualties on the waste ground.

What John Johnston and Damien Donaghey were doing when they were shot

18.22 As described above, we are satisfied that John Johnston was shot when he was approximately in the middle of the laundry waste ground, having turned towards the soldiers in Abbey Taxis. Although one witness said that John Johnston was hit as he was remonstrating with the soldiers for shooting Damien Donaghey, we do not believe that this was the case. Instead we are sure that John Johnston was merely observing what was going on.

18.23 What Damien Donaghey was doing is more difficult to determine.

18.24 Damien Donaghey himself has given a number of differing accounts of what he was doing when he was shot.

18.25 On 8th February 1972, and while in Altnagelvin Hospital, he was asked by Detective Sergeant Cudmore of the RUC (in the presence of Fr Joseph Carolan) how he received his injuries and answered “I heard a bang and I fell. There was no trouble at the time. ” DS Cudmore then asked him what he was doing in the area at the time and he said “I was taking a short cut to go to my cousins in Garvan Place, Rossville Flats ”. He told the officer that he did not want to make a statement at the time but that he would make a statement to his solicitor.1

1 AD120.17

18.26 On 28th February 1972 Damien Donaghey did give a statement to his solicitor,1 which was put before the Widgery Inquiry. In this he recorded that he had come down William Street at about 4.00pm and noticed a cloud of gas around the junction of William Street and Rossville Street, that as he reached the Nook Bar in William Street he saw three soldiers lying on a ledge at the rear of the Great James Street Presbyterian church and that he also noticed two soldiers inside the former premises of Abbey Taxis in William Street. He said the soldiers on the ledge had their rifles aimed towards the direction of Columbcille Court. His statement continued:

“I went round the corner of the ‘Nook Bar’ and into the waste ground beside it. I was walking towards Columbcille Court then. I heard the sound of a rubber bullet being fired and I saw it bounce off the wall on my right and I then ran to pick it up. As I was bending down to pick it up I heard a shot ring out and I felt a twinge in my right hip. I fell to the ground and I saw the blood coming from a hole in my trousers just above my right knee. I then realised that I was shot. Some men came and I shouted to them that I was shot. Just as these men were coming to pick me up I heard two more shots and they were not rubber bullet shots … At no stage did I have a gun or a nail bomb in my possession. ”
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Re: Report of the The Bloody Sunday Inquiry volume 2

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1 AD120.18

18.27 On 1st March 1972 Philip Jacobson and Peter Pringle of the Sunday Times Insight Team interviewed Damien Donaghey, who was still in hospital. In his evidence to us, Damien Donaghey denied giving an interview to these journalists,1 but we are satisfied that in fact he did so. According to their notes, which we consider contain an accurate account of the interview:2

“Donaghey says he missed the march because he went to a dance on the Saturday night and didn’t get up till late. He was on his way to see his cousin, a Mrs Shields, (No. 15, 1st floor of the Rossville block on Rossville St.). He was in William St behind the main body of the march when he saw the gas at the end of the street. He decided to cut across through Columbcille Court to the Rossville flats. There were a few youths throwing stones at about three soldiers on the low roof next to the Presbyterian Church. He heard a rubber bullet being fired, turned round to see where the bullet was coming and as he turned he was hit in the right thigh.

At first he thought it was a rubber bullet but then saw the blood on his leg and he cried out that he had been hit. The person nearest to him was an oldish man he now knows to be Mr Johnston and he came towards him. Donaghey was lying on the ground and he heard two more rifle shots and saw that Mr Johnston had been hit…

He says that although he is a regular William Street stone thrower he was NOT throwing stones on that day…

While he has been in Altnagelvin he has had tow [sic] calls from the Special Branch. They asked him to place on a map where he was wounded and also asked him to make a statement which he refused to do. ”


1 Day 70/27 2 AD120.2-4

18.28 In a Praxis interview in 19911 Damien Donaghey is recorded as having told the interviewer:

“On waste ground in William Street, opposite Presbyterian Church. With 2/3 friends (John McGhee [sic] was one of them), threw handful of stones at soldiers who were on church roof, beside bakery, on that roof and inside.

Roaring, shouting crowd of perhaps 20. NO BOMBS AND NO GUNS.

Turned and walking away, not behind corner but near it.

Shot in right leg, went in front and out the back. Shot straight on as he turned to walk back. ”


1 AD120.25

18.29 In the subsequent Praxis Channel 4 television Secret History documentary Bloody Sunday broadcast on 22nd January 1992 Damien Donaghey said:1

“There was a bit of rioting, because the army were in the bakery over there and they were on the rooftops and there were soldiers on the roof over there too and then we kind of dropped our stones and were walking away again. Then I just turned and the next thing I was shot and was lying on my back you know. ”


1 X1.7.12

18.30 A little later in the interview Damien Donaghey was asked whether he was doing anything at that time that the soldiers could have thought was aggressive. His answer was, “No nothing at all, wasn’t doing nothing at that time ”.1
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18.31 By the words “the bakery ” we consider that Damien Donaghey was intending to refer to Abbey Taxis, which was once a bakery.

18.32 In the course of preparing for the BBC television Inside Story documentary Remember Bloody Sunday (first broadcast on 29th January 1992) Peter Taylor interviewed Damien Donaghey. In this interview (which was taped and transcribed but not used in the final programme) Damien Donaghey told Peter Taylor:1

“… after the march, was kinda breaking up, there were a little bit of rioting, where they – they were stoning the soldiers in the bakery, but at that time I was walking through the wasteground and when I turned aro [sic] – I happened to just turn around to talk to another fella and I turned around and the next thing I knew I was lying on my back, I was shot, I didn’t know I was shot, and er, I cannae remember (INAUDIBLE) … there were people all around me, the next thing I knew I was lifted and was took into a house over in Glen Fadda [sic] Park.

PETER: Do you remember being shot?

DAMIAN [sic]: Not really, to be truthful you know, the next thing I was – I’d just had me turn and the next thing I was lying on me back, you know, and I felt my leg you know, and then a man says er – a boy had been shot and the next thing there were three or four – maybe half a dozen people all around me, and a man Johnson [sic] as I didn’t know him then but I knew later, he tried to lift me and he was shot too, and then I was carried into a house in Glen Fadda Park.

PETER: Had you been rioting?

DAMIAN: No not – not rioting no.

PETER: Had you thrown any stones at the soldiers?

DAMIAN: Nothing at all, no.”
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1 I73-82

18.33 It is possible that Peter Taylor did not accept Damien Donaghey’s denial that he had been throwing stones, as in the programme as shown Peter Taylor said, “Donaghy had been throwing stones ”.1

1 X1.9.20

18.34 On 23rd August 1998 (after the institution of the present Inquiry), Damien Donaghey was interviewed by Don Mullan. In the course of this interview (which was taped and transcribed)1 he was asked “What do you remember about the incident then – you were on the march? ” The reply was:

“On the march, coming down William Street. We were coming down past the bakery, I noticed there were soldiers up on top of what would have been the Protestant Church on Great James Street…

There were a wee bit of rioting down at the bottom of William Street and that was it, and there were soldiers in the bakery – it was the old Ormeau bakery on William Street. They were left, but he was hiding in behind an old broken window, you know, that was it – you never think, then I just turned round and the next thing I was lying on my back and there were a couple of people came to lift me. One of the men that came to lift me was John Johnston. He was shot, but I didn’t know till the day after… ”


1 AD120.58-59

18.35 The reference to the “old Ormeau bakery ” is again in our view a reference to Abbey Taxis.

18.36 In his written statement to this Inquiry, Damien Donaghey gave a longer account of his movements and activities up to the time when he was shot:1

“I was born on 21 May 1956. At the time of the march which took place in Derry on 30 January 1972 I was 15 years old.

Bloody Sunday was the first time that I had been on a march. At that time I was not particularly interested in civil rights. I went on the march with some friends of about my own age, as everyone else seemed to be going. Amongst the small group of friends who went with me were Alex McGuinness, Sean O’Neill and Liam Doherty. They were friends who lived near me at […]. We were all at school together. We met at the Creggan shops and went from there to join the beginning of the march. People of all ages and all walks of life had gathered to take part in the march.
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I was about a half to three quarters of the way back in the crowd of marchers as we set off. I walked with the crowd along the whole of the route of the march as far as William Street. The first sight that I had of any soldiers were those which were positioned at the junction of Francis Street and Great James Street. They were about 150 yards away. There was some catcalling from the crowd when they were noticed, but it was nothing venomous. There was no reaction from the soldiers. I saw another group of soldiers as the crowd moved further along William Street. These were positioned at the junction of Lower Road and Great James Street. There was some further catcalling from the crowd.

I continued to walk along William Street with the rest of the crowd. Shortly afterwards, I noticed a number of soldiers on a flat roof at the back of the Presbyterian Church, to the north of William Street. I have marked the approximate position of the soldiers at A on the map (grid reference K05). I also noticed some other soldiers on the roof of the GPO Sorting Office close to the Presbyterian Church. The sorting office is marked B on the map (grid reference L06). The soldiers in both positions were approximately 150 to 200 yards away from me. Whilst I noticed that the soldiers were there, I remember very little about them. I think there were about three soldiers in each position, but there may have been a few more. They were aiming rifles. I could not really see what they were wearing.

The next thing that I remember is that a group of young fellows near me noticed some other soldiers moving around in a derelict building next to the old bakery on the north side of William Street. The building was formerly used as an office by Abbey Taxis. I have marked the position of the building at C on the map (grid reference J07). The same building can be seen clearly on the attached photograph. I saw some of the soldiers moving between windows on the ground level which I have marked on the photographs. When I saw the soldiers, I was standing on the opposite side of William Street (the south side) near the Nook Bar. I have marked my approximate position at D on the map (K08) and on the attached photograph.

I watched as about five or six lads shouted abuse at the soldiers. The young lads then began to throw stones and bottles towards the derelict building where the soldiers were. This only lasted for about two minutes. I find it very difficult to say how many soldiers were in the building. They were moving back and forth between the windows. I would say there were three or so, but there may have been one or two more. I could see that they were armed with rifles and I think they were wearing tin helmets. I cannot remember anything else about them.

People involved at the tail end of the march – approximately a couple of hundred – passed by as this was going on. Other people were cutting across to Free Derry Corner. I did not get involved with the lads throwing stones and I did not throw any stones myself. It was not a serious disturbance. I would not even describe it as a riot.

I watched the young lads throwing stones for no more than a couple of minutes. The soldiers were taunting the young fellas. I am sure that during this period no petrol bombs or nail bombs were thrown, and I did not see anybody around me with any sort of weapon. I then recall that I heard two rubber bullets being fired from across the road from the direction of the derelict building next to the old bakery, the same building where I had seen the soldiers. There were two loud bangs, and one of the rubber bullets ricocheted off a wall not far from where I was standing. I do not recall exactly which wall the rubber bullet hit, or whether the bullet hit the top, middle or bottom of the wall. The rubber bullet fell onto the waste ground on my side (the south side) of William Street. I saw it and decided to go and pick it up, as everybody collected them at the time and it was possible to sell them as a souvenir.

I took about three steps towards the rubber bullet. I hadn’t got within 20 feet of the rubber bullet when I felt a jab in my right leg. Initially, there was no strong sensation of pain, but I fell immediately onto my back. My approximate position when this happened is marked F on the Plan (grid reference K08). I was not aware of any people being around me when I was hit, nor can I remember hearing a shot being fired beforehand. I did not realise that I had been shot until I put my hand to my trousers. I looked at my hand and it was covered in blood. The bullet had hit me on the right side of my knee at a slight downward angle. It broke my femur and came out at the back of my thigh. ”
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Re: Report of the The Bloody Sunday Inquiry volume 2

Post  Guest on Wed 16 Jun - 18:27

18.37 The map or plan to which Damien Donaghey referred in this statement is shown below.1

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18.38 Shortly after he was interviewed by this Inquiry, Damien Donaghey gave a further account to the writer Jimmy McGovern, and his producer Stephen Gargan, who were working on a dramatisation of the events of 30th January 1972 that was later screened under the title Sunday:1

“… I got down to where the Nook Bar was, where I was shot … the march was coming down William Street at the bakery corner round from Abbey Taxis there was soldiers in there, in the derelict building at the side you know. And there were a few stones threw at them but that was it and the plastic bullet was fired and it came off the wall and I went to go for it and next thing I was lying shot.

J. McG … Did you handle the plastic bullet?

D.D … I never even got my hand on it to tell you the truth and then that … it happened that quick do you know what I mean and I was lying on me back … ”


1 AD120.28-29

18.39 Damien Donaghey gave oral evidence to this Inquiry on 25th January 2001.1 At the outset of his evidence he read out the following prepared statement:

“‘After discussions with my legal representatives and because the main reason we are here is for the truth to be told, I may wish to admit that I threw stones. I also would like to add that when I was shot, I did not have a nail bomb or anything else in my hands. ’”


1 Day 70/001

18.40 In the course of his oral evidence to this Inquiry Damien Donaghey was asked why he had previously stated that he had not thrown any stones at all. He agreed that he had done this and when asked why, he said this:1

“At that time I was a bit afraid in a way in case I would be charged with rioting, but another way I was afraid – I thought it might give the soldiers credibility for shooting me, because I threw stones. ”


1 Day 70/020

18.41 It is understandable that in 1972 Damien Donaghey should have denied that he was throwing stones, and indeed that he should have made up a story about not being on the march, since he risked being sent to a remand home for six months or a training school for three years for such activities. However, since (as we are sure he knew) there was no risk at all of being charged with riotous behaviour or any other offence decades after the event, this does not explain how he came to deny to Peter Taylor in the early 1990s that he had been stone throwing or (and more importantly) how he made the same denial in his written evidence to this Inquiry. Leaving aside what he said in 1972, and accepting the reasons that he gave for not telling the truth, the later denials appear to us to have been made because of his concern that by admitting to rioting he might give credibility to the evidence of the soldiers who shot him.

18.42 To our minds this amounted to an attempt deliberately to distort and conceal the truth from this Inquiry for the purpose of trying to remove any possible justification for the shooting. The explanation in his prepared statement for his belated admission that he had in fact been throwing stones was “because the main reason we are here is for the truth to be told ”, but we find this difficult to accept, since he must have been well aware that this was the purpose of this Inquiry when he denied stone throwing in his written statement.

18.43 As well as the question of stone throwing, there are other matters that cast doubt on the reliability of Damien Donaghey’s testimony as to what he was doing when shot. For example in his various accounts over the years, he said he had been shot as he was picking up a rubber bullet, as he was turning round to see where a rubber bullet was coming from, as he turned round to talk to someone, and (in his written and oral evidence to this Inquiry) as he was going towards a rubber bullet but had not got within 20 feet of it. As already observed, he was mistaken in insisting in his oral evidence that he was at the north-east rather than the north-west corner of the laundry waste ground and that he had not talked to the press when he was in hospital.

18.44 It was suggested that these matters, and other discrepancies and inconsistencies in the accounts Damien Donaghey has given over the years and to this Inquiry, demonstrate that he has persistently lied.1 We are not persuaded that this is necessarily the case, though he clearly lied at one stage about not throwing stones. What must be borne in mind is that on Bloody Sunday Damien Donaghey, then a boy of 15, was grievously wounded by gunfire, which put him in hospital for many months and has adversely affected him ever since. In the emotions created by this and the other events of the day, he may have come to believe and say things that did not in fact happen.
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Re: Report of the The Bloody Sunday Inquiry volume 2

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18.45 In these circumstances, we do not feel able to place any reliance on the accounts given by Damien Donaghey as to what he was doing when he was shot, unless other convincing evidence supports what he has said. It is thus necessary to consider the other material that we have gathered on this topic.

18.46 In her written evidence to this Inquiry Monica McDaid said that she heard what she thought was the sound of a rubber bullet gun, and that:1

“After the shot was fired, the young fellow who had been on the waste ground, turned to retrieve the rubber bullet which had been fired, and then ran away from William Street along the gable of the building on the waste ground. A few seconds later I heard a second shot. I mentioned to my husband that it was another rubber bullet but he said no it was a lead shot. I saw the young lad stumble as his legs buckled underneath him. I cannot remember if he fell to the ground … I found out the day after that the young lad was Damien Donaghy… ”


1 AM170.2

18.47 In her oral evidence to this Inquiry Monica McDaid gave a slightly different account, which was that “… there was a shot and I seen the young fella going to retrieve the rubber bullet … but then, I think immediately, there was another shot and he stumbled ”.1

1 Day 65/124-125

18.48 There are difficulties with Monica McDaid’s evidence. She said that the only young person there was Damien Donaghey,1 that John Johnston was shot about three minutes after Damien Donaghey2 (though she modified this in her oral evidence3), that there was no rioting on the waste ground while she was there,4 and that she saw soldiers in the derelict building looking out south directly onto William Street, and not onto the waste ground north of that street.5

1 Day 65/123-24 4 Day 65/123/14-17

2 AM170.3 5 Day 65/125

3 Day 65/127/5-25
18.49 We are satisfied that there were a number of young persons in the immediate area, some of whom were engaged in stone throwing (though there were also a number of older people merely watching the rioting from the laundry waste ground), that John Johnston was shot at the same time as, or immediately after, Damien Donaghey and that soldiers were looking onto the waste ground and not directly south onto William Street. In our view it is not possible to place reliance on Monica McDaid’s evidence with regard to the matters under discussion, for many of her recollections after so many years (she apparently made no statement in 1972) are clearly erroneous, though we have no reason to suppose that she was doing other than her best to help the Tribunal. We should note that she was with her husband, Thomas McDaid, who gave written and oral evidence to this Inquiry and who had made a NICRA statement on 1st February 1972.1 There was nothing in that statement to suggest that Damien Donaghey was trying to retrieve a rubber bullet when he was shot.

1 AM177.4

18.50 There were many people in the area of the laundry waste ground, numbering well over 50. There were probably only very few marchers still going down William Street and past Abbey Taxis and the laundry waste ground. John Johnston described himself as being at the tail of the march when he decided to go across the laundry waste ground. A substantial number of people had come back up William Street to avoid the CS gas at Aggro Corner, many of whom had turned into the laundry waste ground and were making their way south. Others were standing in that ground, mostly at the southern end, some watching youths throwing stones and bottles at the soldiers in and on the buildings to the north. At this stage in the rioting, it seems to us that probably only about a dozen or so people at the most were engaged in throwing stones and bottles.
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Re: Report of the The Bloody Sunday Inquiry volume 2

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18.51 Many civilian witnesses gave evidence about the shooting of Damien Donaghey. As already noted, it is to be expected that in any situation where a number of people seek to describe the same event, there are differences in these accounts, some very marked. In many cases it seemed to us more likely than not that the person in question had not actually been watching Damien Donaghey at the moment he was shot and had only observed him before or afterwards, sometimes immediately afterwards. In other cases it seems to us likely that the witnesses really saw little or nothing, but have come to believe otherwise over the years. All this makes it difficult to be certain about some matters, though on others we have been able to form a firm view.

18.52 We are satisfied, from the evidence of civilians, the nature of his wounds, and the position of the soldiers who fired, that Damien Donaghey was at or close to the north-west corner of the laundry waste ground and was facing north or north-west when he was shot. We are not persuaded that he was seeking to retrieve a rubber bullet, although very shortly before he was shot soldiers had fired rubber bullets from Abbey Taxis and possibly also from the roof immediately to the east of the Presbyterian church.1 He had been engaged with others (probably at most a dozen) in throwing stones at the soldiers in Abbey Taxis, on occasion going forward as far as the north side of William Street to do so.2

1 AM78.3; AO56.1; Day 61/163; AM452.16; AM431.5 2 AQ1.4; AD80.1; Day 92/57-58; Day 62/8; Day 70/22; AM37.1

18.53 Damien Donaghey was probably the furthest north of a group (some or all of whom had been rioting) who had taken shelter by the wall on the western side of the laundry waste ground when soldiers fired rubber bullets.1

1 Day 66/39-40; Day 152/189-190; AC132.2

18.54 He might have been dodging in and out of that cover or peering round the wall when he was shot,1 but there is nothing in the civilian evidence to suggest that he might have been about to throw a stone or similar object at the soldiers to the north of William Street at this moment, though he probably had thrown a stone shortly before.

1 Day 69/87-90; Day 109/94-95; Day 65/7

18.55 There is no civilian evidence whatever from anyone in the area of Abbey Taxis that suggests that either Damien Donaghey or indeed anyone else had either thrown or was preparing to throw a nail bomb or similar lethal device. On the contrary there was a substantial body of civilian evidence from people in the area to the effect that this was not the case.1

1 Day 64/50-51; AM450.6; AM452.2; AO6.3; AM253.1; AM253.7; Day 59/46; Day 71/151

18.56 However, there were three witnesses whose evidence, it was suggested, indicated the possibility that a nail bomb or bombs exploded in this area.1

1 FS7.1070-1075

18.57 Frank Lawton, who was observing the march from an open window in the living room of his mother-in-law’s maisonette on the fifth floor of Block 1 of the Rossville Flats recorded, in a contemporaneous NICRA statement,1 that he heard one nail bomb explode at a time when the man on the coal lorry in Rossville Street was calling for people to meet at Free Derry Corner. This explosion, he said “appeared to be at the Grandstand Bar in William Street ”. The Grandstand Bar was the first building still standing to the east of Abbey Street on the south side of William Street and is marked on the following photograph.
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Re: Report of the The Bloody Sunday Inquiry volume 2

Post  Guest on Wed 16 Jun - 18:31

18.58 In his written evidence to this Inquiry, Frank Lawton put the time when he heard this explosion as about five to ten minutes before the Army moved into the Bogside,1 which, if correct, would mean he heard it at or about 4.00pm. However, as appears below, there were soldiers very close to the Grandstand Bar, in Harrison’s Garage on the other side of William Street, none of whom reported or recalled hearing a bomb at or near this location. Frank Lawton was in a flat some 200 yards distant from the Grandstand Bar. At the time he recalls, gas canisters were exploding and baton guns firing. We are not persuaded that his evidence undermines that of those who were much nearer Abbey Taxis.

1 AL6.1

18.59 In a 1972 statement to Philip Jacobson of the Sunday Times Insight Team, William McCormack (who was then a lecturer at Magee College in Londonderry) denied hearing nail or petrol bombs at any time,1 though he gave an account of seeing a soldier on the roof of the GPO sorting office who fired at and missed a boy who had been throwing stones, something of which no other witness has spoken and, as we have already observed, something which in our view did not happen. In his oral evidence to us, Professor McCormack agreed that it was possible that he had not actually observed the soldier shooting as opposed to pointing his gun towards the stone throwers, something that several others did see.2

1 AM136.15; AM136.17 2 Day 113/102

18.60 In an article published in 1998 Professor McCormack (under the name Hugh Maxton) referred to “sounds of explosions in William Street, but distant and insignificant ”.1 It is not clear where Professor McCormack might have been when he heard these explosions. In view of his 1972 denial, this recollection does not in our view undermine the evidence of those close to Abbey Taxis that no nail bombs were thrown in that area.

1 AM136.8

18.61 Brian Callan gave a NICRA statement1 in which he described being halfway up William Street and hearing rubber bullets and gas being fired from the roofs. His statement continues, “At this particular time there was a big bang and smoke rose from the central office of the GPO. The talk in the crowd was that something had gone wrong with the store of CS gas. This cloud of gas drifted in our general direction. ”

1 AC4.5

18.62 Brian Callan gave a written statement to this Inquiry in which he gave a similar description.1

1 AC4.2

18.63 We are sure no CS gas was fired from the GPO building. In our view what Brian Callan heard and saw was the deployment of gas at Barrier 12, to which we have referred above. His evidence does not support the proposition that nail bombs may have been thrown in the area of Abbey Taxis.

18.64 In the light of the evidence discussed above, we are sure that no nail bombs exploded in the area where Damien Donaghey and John Johnston were shot.

18.65 We should add at this point that there is no civilian evidence that suggests to us that anyone apart from John Johnston and Damien Donaghey was injured by gunfire in this area of the city at this time.
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Post  Guest on Wed 16 Jun - 18:31

Where Damien Donaghey and John Johnston were taken

18.66 After he was shot Damien Donaghey was dragged behind the cover of the wall to the west of the laundry waste ground and then carried by a number of people to Brigid “Ma ” Shiels’ house at 8 (or 8A) Columbcille Court, as shown on the photograph and map below.1

1 AB69.1; AB69.3; AM217.7; AM217.2; AD80.3; AD80.5; H3.8; H3.2; AC132.2


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Re: Report of the The Bloody Sunday Inquiry volume 2

Post  Guest on Wed 16 Jun - 18:34

18.67 Shortly afterwards people assisted John Johnston to the same house.1 There they were treated by Dr Raymond McClean, Dr Kevin Swords and a number of volunteer members of the Order of Malta Ambulance Corps, a voluntary organisation of civilians who were trained in first aid and who attended public events to provide medical assistance.2

1 H3.8; H3.2; AM283.11; AM283.15; AM283.3; AM230.8; AM230.3; AO56.1; AF26.4; AF26.6; AM450.2; AM450.7
2 AM105.82; AM105.65-67; AM105.5; AS42.1-2; AL2.2-3; AD13.1-2; AM166.3; AM17.9; AD50.28; AD50.31-32;
AD50.36-37; AG21.3


18.68 Fr Carolan then took John Johnston to Altnagelvin Hospital by car, returning to do the same for Damien Donaghey.1

1 H3.8-9; H3.3-H3.4; H3.13-H3.16

18.69 Larry Doherty of the Derry Journal (a local newspaper) took photographs of the two injured individuals while they were in Ma Shiels’ house. The first two of the following photographs are of Damien Donaghey and the last two of John Johnston.








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Re: Report of the The Bloody Sunday Inquiry volume 2

Post  Guest on Wed 16 Jun - 18:34

18.70 As can be seen from his Sunday Times interview1 and one of the photographs taken in Ma Shiels’ house John Johnston had been wearing an overcoat, a jacket, a woolly cardigan, white shirt and a tie and grey trousers.

1 AJ5.1

18.71 Damien Donaghey said that he had been wearing Wrangler jeans and a creamy coloured Wrangler jerkin, with a shirt and round-necked jumper. The photos taken of him in Ma Shiels’ house show that he was wearing jeans, and it is reasonably clear that he had on a light-coloured jacket of some kind and a dark-coloured jumper. One of the civilian witnesses in a NICRA statement1 described him as wearing a white jerkin and motorbike goggles (Damien Donaghey denying the latter), while others (in statements made to this Inquiry2) described him as wearing a jumper, a darkish bomber jacket, and possibly a zipped-up coat. In view of the photograph it seems that the latter were mistaken in their recollection. Whether Damien Donaghey had been wearing motorbike goggles seems doubtful, for as will be seen, neither of the soldiers who targeted him mentioned seeing these.

1 AB70.9 2AM217.2; AM230.3; AF26.4; AC132.2

The actions of the soldiers

18.72 As described above, at about 1540 hours Major Loden had ordered Machine Gun Platoon forward to Abbey Taxis, members of Mortar Platoon forward to cut the wire on the east side of the Presbyterian church, and Composite Platoon to be prepared to deploy forward to the open ground south of the Presbyterian church to arrest rioters. At this stage Major Loden was at his Observation Post (OP), which was on the roof of a building on the south-west corner of the church. He had a signaller in the courtyard below him to the north, as that was the only position from which he could communicate with the 1 PARA Tac HQ (the Gin Palace) on the battalion net. Major Loden also had a radio and possibly another signaller (Lance Corporal INQ 6271) with him on the roof, for the purpose of communicating with the platoons of his company on the company net.2

1 C627.3 2 B2219-20

18.73 Colonel Wilford had also set up an OP. There was a little confusion in the evidence as to where exactly this was, but it is probable that it was on the south side of the top floor of the three-storey building to the north-east of the Presbyterian church, which can be seen from the following photograph. On this is also marked the likely position of Major Loden’s OP.
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Re: Report of the The Bloody Sunday Inquiry volume 2

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