Northern Ireland

Manus Deery: Witness describes night 15-year-old was killed in Bogside

John Deery Image copyright Deery family
Image caption A fresh inquest into the boy's death was adjourned on Wednesday

A journalist giving evidence to the inquest of a teenager shot dead by a soldier has said there were no signs of a weapon at the scene of the shooting.

Kevin Myers was working for RTÉ when 15-year-old Manus Deery was killed in Londonderry's Bogside in 1972.

A fresh inquest into the boy's death was adjourned on Wednesday.

The soldier who fired the shot was identified at the beginning of the inquest as William Glasgow, who died in 2001.

Mr Glasgow maintained, up until his death, that he was firing at a gunman, but missed and accidentally killed the teenager.

No gun

The Deery family has always rejected the Army's version of events and claim he was unlawfully killed.

On Wednesday, the inquest heard that Mr Myers was at the Bogside Inn on the night Manus was shot.

He reported on the shooting the following morning for RTE news.

In his TV report from 20 May 1972 - which was played to the coroner's court - Mr Myers stood in the archway where Manus was shot and described the events of the previous night.

In his report, Mr Myers said there was no gunman in the area and that the teenager had no gun.

Woman shrieking

Mr Myers said he had been in Derry briefly working at the time. He told the court he heard the fatal shot and said it was unlike any shot he had ever heard.

He said there was an enormous reverberation and he thought a bomb had gone off.

He said he then saw Manus lying on the ground to his left and heard a woman shrieking.

His first instinct was that it had been a loyalist attack and he went back inside the Bogside Inn.

"Chips on the ground"

He described the scene inside as "bedlam".

Mr Myers appeared to become emotional and had to pause briefly in court before he recalled what happened next.

He then told the court: "I think everyone knows the situation that was there. There was a young man giving him (Manus) the kiss of life.

"The chips were on the ground and the ricochet mark was on the wall."

The inquest has already heard that Manus Deery and his friends had bought chips in a local shop shortly before they walked to the archway, where he was shot.

The inquest has been adjourned until next month.

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