Police Ombudsman appeals for information on anniversary of police officer's murder

Published Date: 24.02.2004

The Police Ombudsman's Office has issued an appeal for information about the circumstances surrounding the murder of Sergeant Joseph Campbell, who was killed in County Antrim exactly 27 years ago tomorrow (Wednesday).

Sgt Campbell was shot dead on the night of February 25 1977 as he locked up the small RUC station at Cushendall on the Antrim coast.

An RUC Detective Sergeant, who was arrested and charged with the murder, was later acquitted of Mr Campbell's death.

Mr Campbell's family have made a number of complaints to the Police Ombudsman's Office, which has since carried out preliminary inquiries into those complaints:

“Based on those inquiries, we feel that there are certain aspects of events before and after the Sgt Campbell's murder which demand investigation,” said the Police Ombudsman, Mrs Nuala O'Loan. “These are now the subject of a full investigation by my office.

“There has been a lot of speculation about police involvement in the murder, and this has caused a great deal of distress and anxiety to the Campbell family over the years. This speculation has been damaging to both the family and policing in Northern Ireland, and it is in the interests of both that we do all we can to discover the truth about whether or not police misconduct played a part in this murder.”

Mrs O'Loan stressed, however, that her officers do not intend to reinvestigate the murder itself.

She has also warned Mr Campbell's family, his former colleagues in the RUC and the community in Cushendall that the investigation will not be easy:

“This will be a very difficult investigation as no doubt some of the people we may wish to speak to are now dead. We are also fully aware that information and memories from more than 25 years ago may not be complete,” she said.

Anyone who believes they may have information relating to the circumstances of Mr Campbell's murder, is asked to contact the Police Ombudsman's Office on 028 9082 8777.


Twitter home