Kevin Williams e-petition response

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Anne Williams

A new e-petition has been set up to bring a Hillsborough victim’s inquest forward, after his mother Anne was diagnosed with terminal cancer.

She has been fighting for 23 years for a new inquest for her son who died at Hillsborough, and it is now getting urgent. She was recently moved into a hospice in Southport, and tweeted: “PLEASE BRING FORWARD KEVIN WILLIAMS INQUEST. please help I would luv to have my inquest before I die”.

Kevin Williams, 15, was one of the 95 people who died at Hillsborough. The 96th victim, Tony Bland, was left in a coma and died in 1993. The original verdict says that it was accidental death, and that all victims were dead by 15.15. However, Anne Williams has evidence that her son was still alive at 16.00.

PC Debra Martin told the BBC in February: “He was still breathing at 3.15. I stayed with him, I was definitely sure that between 3.50 and just gone four o’clock that is when Kevin died. He didn’t die at quarter past three.”

The former policewoman said she was pressured to change her written statement on the tragedy. Dr James Burns believes Kevin would have survived had he been given oxygen and the right care.

On September 12, the Hillsborough Independent Panel’s report revealed that as many as 41 lives could have been saved. The Attorney General has announced that he will apply to have the verdicts of the 96 deaths quashed. It’s this process that people sign up to forward as fast as possible, because of Anne’s illness.

The new e-petition had reached 29,500 signatures by Monday night, when the Attorney General replied: “The Attorney General is deeply saddened to hear the of Anne Williams’ diagnosis. He continues to give this matter priority and, as explained in his statement to the House of Commons on 16 October 2012, he is consulting the families on his application.

“He recognises the additional urgency this sad news brings to the process and will make his application as soon as he possibly can.”

If the petition reaches 100,000 signatures, it will be considered for debate by the Back Bench Business committee. An e-petition that ended in January this year started by Anne Williams and Hope for Hillsborough reached 118,467 signatures, and a debate took place on 22 February 2012. The e-petition will close on January 29th.

About Arild Skjaeveland, JMU Journalism