TO THE NEWS EDITOR
On 3 Oct 2005, the
Dunblane Inquiry documents were made available
to the public at the National Archives of Scotland. They
are not a complete set of statements.
Through a series
of Freedom of Information requests to
Central Scotland Police, I have ascertained
that many witness statements were not deposited. These are
statements of witnesses who did not give evidence at the Inquiry,
nor was their evidence read out at the Inquiry.
attached witness statement is one of these [see below]. It
is the statement of an off-duty police
officer who entered the gym immediately
behind the headteacher Ron Taylor
and the janitor John Currie.
is the witness statement of Grant McCutcheon,
now a Sergeant with Northern Constabulary. We spoke on
the phone last week and he has confirmed that the detail he gave
is correct. That is, he did
not see the revolver Thomas Hamilton
to kill himself with, he saw only one holster (not 4
as we were told at the Inquiry), that
Hamilton was wearing a black boilersuit
(not black corduroy trousers as Lord Cullen
said in his report) and that he did not see ear defenders on the
gunman (well who removed them?)
astonishing that this witness was not called to give evidence at
the Inquiry. His role on the day
has been airbrushed out of the picture. It was only through
persistent demands to Central Scotland Police
that I eventually got a copy of this statement. Isn’t
it astonishing that it wasn’t deposited at the Archives
and was probably never intended to be.
It is time now
for an independent investigation into Central Scotland
Police. How many more witness statements have
they held back from the National Archives of Scotland? It
is nearly 10 years since the Massacre
at Dunblane Primary School. It
is time now to honour the dead with the truth.
For further information,
Tel 01947 840071
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from Central Scotland Police
17 Nov 2005
statement of Off Duty Police
Officer who entered Dunblane Primary School
Recently we wrote to
you in relation to a Freedom of Information
request concerning the identity of an off-duty police
officer who entered Dunblane Primary School
gymnasium shortly after the shootings there on 13th March 2005 (sic!).
At that time, we understood that the statements of all those adults
who were present at the gym and surrounding area in the immediate
aftermath of the shootings there had been deposited in the National
Archives of Scotland for the public to consult following
redaction to protect personal information. It has now come
to our attention that the statement of the off-duty police
officer who was the subject of your request has not yet been deposited.
I am hoping to arrange with the other parties for the deposit
of this document in the near future, but in the meantime I enclose
a redacted copy in the hope that you will find it of relevance and
Freedom of Information Officer
STATEMENT OF WITNESS
– Off duty police
officer delivering his child to the Nursery at the
locus, enters gym after shooting
Taken by : DC 290
Date taken : Sunday 17.03.1996
At : Home Address
I am thirty one years
of age and have completed eighteen months police
service. I am currently stationed at Falkirk Police
Office and have been for the duration of my police
I currently reside
at the address given with my wife and two children. My
children’s names are ________ aged 4 and _________ aged 2
_________ . _________ attends at Dunblane Primary School
Nursery, Doune Road, Dunblane from Monday
to Friday (0930 hours to 1145 hours each day).
On Wed 13 March 1996
I was officially rostered for a rest day.
About 0927 hours, same
date, I left my house at _______________, Dunblane
and conveyed both my children to my vehicle parked outside.
I placed both children into the rear of my Vauxhall Astra red coloured
Reg No ___________ and secured them.
I then drove to Dunblane
Primary School in Old Doune Road, Dunblane
and entered the school yard via the main gates. I drove up
the main drive and parked my vehicle in an area directly at the
top of the drive. There were other vehicles parked there,
however I cannot recall what types or colours. I can recall
I had a bit of a job getting a space.
I arrived at the school
at about 0932 hours. I am aware of the time as I knew the
nursery class began at 0930 and I knew I was just a bit late, that
is how I came to ascertain that time.
I took my children
from the car and walked them into the school via the main entrance.
I was not aware of any white van or delivery vehicles parked anywhere
there at that time.
I entered the main
reception area, turned left and walked down a set of stairs.
I did not see anyone at that time nor did I hear anything.
I then turned left
again and entered the corridor of the nursery wing. I
then entered the first classroom on the right, the class where I
normally leave _________ . I allowed _________ to enter
the class and left with my son.
I walked my son to
an area in the corridor I previously described of the nursery wing
and he decided that he wanted to play with some toys that were there.
I stood there as he played at a Wendy House type toy. I
stood there for about three minutes or so, I still didn’t
hear anything of the incident.
I was then aware of
a group of children, about seven or eight year olds, walking from
a corridor which leads onto the corridor I was standing in. They
were being followed by a teacher, I assumed. She was middle
aged, greying hair, wearing a shift. I cannot describe her
further. She was “shooing” the children on towards
myself. They all passed me and entered the third room on the
right. I believe they call the room the GP room.
The corridor was then
empty with the exception of myself and my son and a female.
She was about 5’ 8” in height, late 20s-early 30s, long
dark hair and was wearing glasses. She was of a medium build
and was wearing black leggings and a dark coloured top.
At that time, a female
known to me as Mrs ________(S35/D) the Deputy Head, entered the
corridor where I was, through the double entrance doors.
She was quite calm
and informed me that there was a man in the school. She continued
to tell me that he was in the gymnasium and that he was shooting.
I immediately thought that she was talking of someone with
an air pistol as I didn’t hear any gun shots.
She then told me that
he was in the gym shooting at that time. I then thought that
it was something to be really concerned about.
I told her I was a
policeman and asked if I could help.
She replied “Yes please”. I handed my son to the
female in the corridor and asked her to look after him as I intended
to go to the gym.
I ran up the corridor
of the nursery wing to the main corridor or that area with Mrs _____
at my heels.
I turned right into
that corridor and ran up the small set of stairs there, where the
janitors office is located. I saw a female, aged mid to late
forties, short greying hair, wearing a shirt and a dark coloured
cardigan (witness __________ S385/D). She had blood on her
hands and I could see blood on her head from an area to the rear
of her head. I could see that she was conscious and was moving;
however, she was lying at the top of the stairs on the left almost
opposite the janitor’s office.
I formed the opinion
that she wasn’t in any immediate danger and so I continued
to run towards the assembly hall area. I don’t think
I passed anyone en route to the assembly hall.
I entered the assembly
hall via swing doors and saw that there was no one within.
I didn’t know
where to go from there and so Mrs __________ told me to turn right.
I did so and went through another set of double doors leading to
a corridor. I turned left and ran along the corridor. There
was a flight of stairs half way along the corridor. I
ran up these stairs and on the left side of the corridor further
on there was about a group of children in gym kit sitting on the
floor with their backs propped against the wall on the left. I
can recall the last child was a young boy. I cannot describe
their ages or descriptions, however, I could tell that they were
wearing blue T-shirts and dark shorts.
I saw that all four
children had gunshot wounds. I can recall that the young
boy at the end had what appeared to me pellet marks to his left
leg. I could not ascertain where the wounds were or what they
consisted of. I know that all had bloodstained clothing. The
little boy at the end spoke to me (witness ______ ). He
said words to the effect of “HE’S GOT A GUN MISTER”.
I could tell that all
were conscious and breathing and I continued to the doors leading
to the gym hall itself.
Both doors were ajar. I
do not recall if they were wedged or otherwise. I entered
and saw carnage. A flurry of thoughts and feelings came on
me and I was aware of a strong smell of gunsmoke. I also formed
the opinion that all the children I saw were dead as all were motionless.
I saw a group of bodies
to my immediate right at the entrance doors where I stood.
That was the group where the teacher (deceased Mayor) was that died.
I can recall that her body was on top of other children. I
saw that they were dressed in gym kit, blue T-shirt and dark shorts. I
formed the opinion that they were all dead.
I also saw a group
to my left, halfway up the left side of the hall. They consisted
of about four or five further children, wearing exactly the same
state of dress. I formed the opinion they were all dead also.
I also saw another group of children half way up the gym hall on
the right side. That group consisted of about four children
who looked dead.
I further observed
the janitor (witness _______ S27/D) who was standing to the left
side of a black figure lying on the floor. I knew he was the
gunman. I formed this opinion as he had shot himself in the
head and together with other factors in my mind I took him to be
as such. As I took all this in and formed my opinions I saw
two pistols there.
saw that his head had been blown away and the contents were behind
him. I was focused on this image. I then saw the janitor
bend down at the gunman’s left side and saw him retrieve a
pistol. It was dark coloured and was not
a revolver. I cannot describe it further.
I also saw a further pistol lying to the left side of the gunman’s
body. That was dark coloured as well and wasn’t
also said to the janitor as he stood up to put the pistol down on
the floor. I saw him place it at his feet. He was standing
some 5-6 feet at the side of the gunman’s feet. He told
me he just wanted to get the gun away from him.
also saw, at the same time as all this, that the gunman was gurgling
and breathing heavily. I formed the opinion that he was still
alive but obviously nearing death. He was wearing a black
boiler suit and he had a tan coloured leather holster around
his waist on the left side. He appeared to be wearing a dark
coloured anorak which had fallen open. I didn’t notice
his footwear. I saw magazines, black coloured, lying
about him. I do not know what number. I did see spent
cases of ammunition lying about his body also. I could not
put a number on them.
see ear defenders on the gunman at all.
I saw the janitor (witness
_________ ) walk towards me at that point. I also saw the
headmaster (witness __________ S64/D) standing in the centre of
the hall looking in the direction of the gunman. I saw that
he appeared to be stunned and motionless. He then looked at
me and asked me who I was. I told him I was a policeman.
He ran up to me and
started shouting at me “What can we do?” a couple of
times. I tried to make a sensible decision then and take in
all that I saw and had seen. I couldn’t decide if I
should commence first aid on anybody or whether to contact any of
the emergency services.
I decided to choose
the latter. I told him, the headmaster (witness ________)
to see if he could administer first aid on anyone and told him specifically
how to stop the flow of blood from a wound. I told him to
find some rags or other suitable materials for this purpose.
As Mrs _________ was
still standing behind me I told her I needed to use a telephone.
She told me to follow her and that she would get me an outside line
somewhere. I followed her to a room I believe is the headmaster’s
Mrs _________ obtained
an outside line and passed the telephone over to me. I
dialled the telephone number 456000 and spoke to a male recipient
of the call. I think this was the operator at headquarters.
I asked for the control
room and was diverted there. I told him that I was PC _______
and that I was at Dunblane Primary School. I
continued and told them that there had been a major firearms incident
and that there were at least a dozen dead or wounded. I
told him that we needed ambulances.
I think he then passed
me onto a Sergeant (non witness _________ ) and he asked me what
was happening with the gunman. I told him he was dead
and he told me that we “didn’t need the firearms team
I told him that I would
keep the line open and remain there. Whilst I was on
the telephone I saw the first of the Dunblane
police officers arrive (police
witnesses _________ S30/D and ___________ S31/D). They were
running from the reception area towards the assembly hall (west).
After they had run
out of sight, police witness _________
returned to my position and I handed the telephone to him.
I didn’t identify myself to him and I don’t think he
I then went back out
the main entrance (north side of building) as I knew that ambulances
would be arriving. I knew I had to clear their passage into
ran out to carry out this task and en route passed a white
van, possibly a Bedford make and the same size, style
as a Sherpa van. I cannot recall if there was anything written
on the sides or anywhere on the vehicle. The engine was still
running and I think it was a diesel engine. It was unattended.
The van was parked
on a raised car parking area to my left (west) between the nursery
corridor and the portable classrooms on the right (west).
I saw a woman (unidentified)
whom I cannot describe in any way at all. She was standing
halfway along the nursery corridor on the exterior of the building. She
looked as if she might be heading for the main entrance to the school.
I shouted to her if
she knew where the driver of this van I’ve described was.
She said he was in the kitchen (witness _______ ). I
went into the kitchen via the exterior doors (north side). I
saw a male person there with some documentation on him (witness
________ ). He was dressed in a purple coloured uniform and
was about 5’ 10” tall, mid to late 40’s, slim
build, grey hair, short. I can recall he had a grey moustache
I told him to move
his van. I left the kitchen first followed by this male.
I saw him getting into this van and he drove off towards the main
I then ran around the
same route this driver had taken and saw a blue coloured Ford Granada.
It was the square shaped Granada. I did not look at the registration
number of the car.
It was driving southwards
and I first saw it as she was at the top of the main drive turning
to her left (eastwards). She, the driver (unidentified), turned
to her left and I stopped her there.
She was seated, obviously,
round faced, mid 30’s, short dirty fair coloured hair.
She also had a boy seated in the rear of her vehicle.
He was seated in the rear passenger side. I could not
describe him at all other than he had short dark hair.
I told her that there
was no point stopping at the school as there had been an incident
that necessitated ambulances to arrive to help injured children.
At that point she manoeuvred
her vehicle and drove off back down the main drive.
I then ran down the
driveway towards the main old Doune Road and stopped at the entrance
to await the arrival of ambulances.
I was still not aware
of any white van parked in the areas I’ve run through.
I stood at the entrance
for about a minute or so at which time a Police
traffic vehicle arrived from Tesco’s direction (west). He
drove up to me and I asked him to park his car somewhere not in
the route leading to the gym. He parked on a pavement on the
east side of the main drive somewhere near the gates. He was Sergeant
__________ (non witness). He was unaccompanied.
Soon thereafter, my
next door neighbour, witness __________ (S235/D), arrived on foot
from the same direction as the previous vehicle.
He came up and asked
me what had happened. He told me that his wife (non
witness _________ ) had telephoned him and told him of what she
had heard had happened. He came down to assist.
I told him that I had
seen his eldest daughter and his son as she, the daughter (non witness
__________) had been one of the group who walked towards me whilst
I stood at the nursery corridor. I also knew that his son
(non witness _________ ) was in that nursery corridor in one of
the classrooms. I told him they were alright. He
told me he was going into the school to look for them and he walked
off towards the school.
Thereafter there was
a succession of police vehicles arrived
at the school via the main gates. There were marked and unmarked
vehicles. I did not recognise any of the drivers or personnel.
I again directed them
to areas which would not block the route an ambulance would take. At
that point the first ambulance arrived. It was manned by a
male and female (witnesses ___________ S34/D and S33/D). I
knew it was the Callander crew as they told me. I directed
them to the path leading to the main entrance and I ran in front
of the vehicle.
The male ambulance
crew member (witness _______ ) departed and asked me if the situation
was genuine. I told him yes and informed him that we would
need more ambulances and asked him to contact his control. He
did that and I saw him speak into his radio set.
I gave them verbal
directions from the main entrance to the gym itself and I saw them
enter the school.
I ran back to the main
entrance/exit; however I failed to notice anyone specifically en
route. I spoke to the occupants of a car that had arrived.
They told me they were doctors and I sent them up to the
gymnasium. I could not describe the vehicle or any of the
Another ambulance arrived
travelling from the direction of Tesco’s. It stopped
at the pedestrian entrance to the school. I ran out towards
them and signalled for it to come to me. It did so and I noticed
a vehicle behind same. It was being driven by a male (witness
__________ Ambulance Officer), early 40’s, dark balding hair
wearing a black bomber jacket with two pips thereon. The passenger
I cannot describe. I believe the ambulance crews were from
They drove up the drive
(south) and I saw a policeman in uniform
standing at the top of the drive. He directed the ambulance
and the vehicle behind along the east side of huts on the west side
of the school yard. I believe that takes you to another entrance
to the gym (west side of the gym hall).
After that due to the
quantity of traffic and personnel arriving at the school I cannot
recall anything further other than the activity.
A short time later
a traffic policeman came to my position
to relieve me. I ran back up through the main entrance to
the school and I saw Inspector (non witness) in the dining hall
area. I asked him if there was anything I could do to which
he replied that I could stand between the dining room and reception
area. I was told to guard this area and to keep out unwanted
Sergeant ________ (non
witness) gave me his yellow bib which I put on. I stood there
until 1230 – 1300 hours. I saw about four injured children
being conveyed from the assembly hall to the main entrance exit. Two
of the injured were conveyed by trolley accompanied by ambulance
staff however I couldn’t describe any of them at all. Two
children were carried out in the arms of others, however I couldn’t
describe them in any way at all.
About 1230 - 1300 hours,
same date, I asked witness __________ (S505/D) if I could go as
I wanted to get to my children. He obliged with this request
and I uplifted my children from the nursery, along with ___________
I then went to my vehicle; however, I was told by Constable
________ that I couldn’t get out the entrance/exit as parents
were being brought through. I walked home via the pedestrian
I met up with ___________
(non witness), an off duty policeman,
who had not been in the school but was in Dunblane. He
gave me a lift home.
On that day I was wearing
black jeans, green/brown coloured boots, blue denim long sleeve
shirt, with a green/white coloured striped T-shirt underneath.
I was also wearing a khaki corduroy coat.
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