Page last updated at 11:38 GMT, Friday, 3 April 2009 12:38 UK

'Hamill Land Rover CCTV not kept'

Robert Hamill
Robert Hamill was beaten to death

The Robert Hamill Inquiry has heard CCTV footage of an RUC Land Rover in Portadown on the night the 25-year-old was attacked was not kept.

Mr Hamill, 25, was beaten to death by a loyalist mob in the town in 1997. No-one has been convicted of the killing.

Mr Hamill's sister Diane told the inquiry on Friday that a police officer confirmed the existence of such footage to her.

She added that another officer appeared "dumbstruck" when he did this.

Ms Hamill said the second officer then "swung his head round and looked" at the first officer.

A legal representative for the officers, who did not dispute the existence of the CCTV footage, said that Ms Hamill had not mentioned the second officer's reaction in her written statement to the inquiry.

Ms Hamill, who agreed with this statement, also said at no time had her family told people in Portadown not to cooperate with the police investigation into her brother's murder.

With regards to CCTV footage from premises in Portadown on the night Mr Hamill was attacked, the inquiry heard this was either handed back or its whereabouts unknown.

There were four officers in the Land Rover and they were sleeping, they had been on duty since 4pm
Fr Sean Dooley

A statement from Fr Sean Dooley, formerly of Drumcree parish in Portadown, was also read.

In it he said he had received an anonymous phone call which he assumed was from a police officer "because of the information he had" which claimed the officers in the Land Rover had been sleeping.

"He (the caller) said that there were four officers in the Land Rover and they were sleeping, they had been on duty since 4pm and were on overtime but didn't want to be there," read the statement.

No other witnesses to the inquiry have suggested that the officers were asleep.

Robert Hamill, a father-of-three, suffered serious head injuries and died 11 days after being set upon in Portadown.

The inquiry, which centres around the claim that the RUC officers in the Land Rover failed to intervene in the attack, continues.

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