Belfast Telegraph

Friday 22 August 2014

Army got IRA man’s identity wrong

Confusion could have existed among the police and security forces over the identity of an IRA man shot dead by an RUC officer 20 years ago, an inquest has heard.

Patrick Pearse Jordan (23) was killed on the Falls Road in November 1992.

Jordan, from New Barnsley Drive in Ballymurphy, died after being shot three times in the back by police while running away from a car hijacked by the IRA.

It was heard, however, during the first day of evidence in Belfast that another man was originally named as the victim in a Ministry of Defence report in the aftermath of the shooting.

The document was produced in court by Barry MacDonald QC, acting on behalf of the Jordan family, while questioning one of the leading officers involved in the operation at the time.

The document showed Jordan was not the original named victim.

Instead, a man only referred to as ‘PD’ during the hearing, was listed.

This had been later scored out and Jordan’s name written in its place.

Mr MacDonald had asked Police Officer AA— who was monitoring the operation from police headquarters — how the information could have been relayed.

“I don’t recall a PD. I can’t comment. I don’t know where this comes from.

“The name PD... 20 years later, I haven’t a clue.”

Coroner Brian Sherrard said the “big point” remains that there was confusion surrounding this at the time apparently, going by the MoD report.

Officer AA said he was briefed at 8.30am on the day of the shooting about a possible munitions movement in Belfast.

He said Arizona Street, known at the time to security forces as a “centre for bomb making” in Belfast, was under surveillance.

At around 3.40pm, intelligence had reported that a “known PIRA activist” was driving the vehicle —a red Ford Orion— in the area of the Whiterock Leisure Centre.

This, however, was not Jordan.

At 5.08pm on November 24 another senior officer gave the order for police to stop and check the vehicle.

Ten minutes later they received reports the car had been rammed and a person shot.

The inquest continues.

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