The Police Ombudsman’s office has been heavily criticised by a resident magistrate as he cleared a PSNI officer of assault following incidents involving GAA fans during a Royal Black Perceptory church parade in Enniskillen. Under cross-examination it was admitted that the Ombudsman’s office only interviewed witnesses involved in the incident that corroborated the allegations but did not interview independent witnesses whose accounts contradicted it. The Resident Magistrate stated:
Had it been fairly and properly investigated this case would have never got off the ground
Newton Emerson believes the case should raise questions about the Public Prosecution Service who dropped the original charges by the officer of disorderly conduct and charged him instead. He highlights a concern that the politics of the peace process is effecting PPS decisions and argues that a legal challenge by Sean Hoey, however painful for the Omagh families, may be the only means of lifting the shroud of secrecy around the PPS and its actions.