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
"This 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 LINK
Thomas Hamilton used to kill himself with LINK,
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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Letter from Central
17 Nov 2005
Dear Ms Uttley
Witness statement of
Off Duty Police Officer who entered Dunblane
Primary School Gym
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
SUMMARY – 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
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
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.
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 a revolver.
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
I didn’t 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 out”.
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 knew me.
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
out to carry out this task and en route passed a white van LINK,
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 as well.
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 entrance
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
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
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 occupants.
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 Stirling.
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 persons.
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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