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I won't rest until I get the truth about my dad's murder

By Deborah McAleese

The son of an off-duty RUC man gunned down by the IRA vowed last night not to rest until he gets justice for his father and said he is considering taking civil action to uncover the truth.

Gavin Larmour called on Chief Constable Hugh Orde to launch an urgent investigation into the 1988 killing of his father RUC Constable John Larmour after a Police Ombudsman report concluded the initial probe had not been carried out properly.

Mr Larmour also said that in his opinion former chief constables Sir John Hermon and Sir Ronnie Flanagan have "serious questions" to answer about the case as "they should have ensured a thorough investigation had been carried out".

"I am my dad's voice now and we - me, my dad and my family - are entitled to a proper investigation and to know the truth and get some sort of justice.

"People were able to walk in and pull a trigger with nothing ever being done about it. I want the truth and I will not rest until I get it."

John Larmour was shot dead by the IRA in his brother's ice-cream parlour on the Lisburn Road in Belfast.

Yesterday a report by the Police Ombudsman said that the murder had not been thoroughly investigated by police. The Police Ombudsman investigation also established that police received information about Constable Larmour's murderer following the attack but not all of it was passed to the detectives investigating what happened.

"We accept that the information was not necessarily evidence but it could have led to evidential opportunities which should have been explored by the police. It did not happen in this case, as the officers investigating the murder were never made aware of all the information available," a spokesman said.

Gavin Larmour said while he welcomed the report he believed it did not go far enough as it did not recommend any disciplinary action against senior officers who "had not ensured a thorough murder inquiry was being carried out".

"This report is just the beginning. It puts pressure on those at the highest level to put in place procedures to get this issue addressed," he said.

He added: "I need to know why my dad's murder was not properly investigated and why information was withheld. I asked on numerous occasions to meet with the Chief Constable but messages went un-returned. I would like him to explain to me exactly what happened, why it was not properly investigated, to tell me what is going to be done to fix it and assure me a proper investigation will now be done as a matter of urgency.

"If that is not the case then I may have to consider civil action, but hopefully it won't come to that. It has taken me 19-and-a-half years to get to this point. If it takes me another 19-and-a-half years to get to the truth of who murdered my father and why his killing was not thoroughly investigated then so be it."

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