The loss of a brother and a son in the hands of the state: an interview with Terence Wheelock's brother Larry and mother Esther
On Saturday 3rd June 2006, the family and friends of Terence Wheelock along with supporters of their campaign for Justice will gather for a vigil at Our Lady of Lourdes Church, Sean McDermott St, Dublin 1 at 12pm, a year and a day to the date upon which Terence was arrested and taken to Store St Garda Station, from where he was later to leave in a coma for the Mater Hospital. Three and a half months later he died. The Garda Síochána claim the injuries which ultimately resulted in his death were self inflicted, yet their actions subsequent to his arrest and detention lead any reasonable person to suspect otherwise. The recent unwarranted invasion of the Wheelock home and ongoing documented intimidation of the family as they continue to search for the truth, confirm for many these suspicions.
Following the vigil a peaceful protest will be held at Store St Garda. All supporters of a civil society where a person's life is not endangered or threatened by the powers of the state; a society where justice is not exclusively a posession of the priveleged and dominant, are asked to attend.
More info: http://www.indymedia.ie/article/76137
Below is the harrowing story of Garda malpractice, harrasment and obstruction of justice through the words of Terence's mother Esther and brother Larry.
(note: this interview was conducted some weeks prior to documented attack on the Wheelock home, recently and reported here on Indymedia and in the Village Magazine last week)
INTERVIEW WITH ESTHER & LARRY WHEELOCK
At their home in Summerhill, April 2006
ESTHER: He was up painting in his room and said he needed a new brush; the one he had was no use, so I gave the money to go out and get one. He said he wouldn’t be long. Next thing I knew the police was at the door. They just turned around and told me there and then my son’s after hanging himself. I didn’t know what to do, I was taken aback. ‘Come on’ they said, ‘I’ll take you down to the hospital’. So the brought me out over to St James’ Hospital and all the time my son was up in the Mater. On the way over they said ‘Could you tell me where St James’ is?, I don’t where it is’. I had to show them the directions. But we got there anyway. The receptionist said he wasn’t there—that what happened on the northside,; he should have been up in the Matter it happened in Store St. We found out off the Matter he was there. When we got there, they were still working with my son. The staff nurse came out and called me in, brought me up to the room, me and my daughter Elaine, and told us that the surgeon is still working with him and then they brought us in to see him when they brought us in. My daughter started panicking, screaming. I went into an awful state myself.
LARRY: Ya see me ma suffers from angina; heart trouble.
ESTHER: I had to get brought back out of the room. While we were in there there was a Garda at the end of his bed. My daughter told me they were waiting. So we were there anyway and they said there’s an awful lot of fluid in his brain; they’re going to have to get him CAT scanned just to make sure that everything’s okay—they don’t want to give us details yet. So they brought him up and apparently he was completely brain dead, you know. They said it was from the lack of oxygen; he was 40 minutes without oxygen.
LARRY: What happened was when me ma went to St James’ Hospital, I thought that was very strange considering that’s a hospital for the south inner city or south County Dublin so I rang St James first just to see was that the case. St James’ said there was no one with that name or that type of injury there so I rang the Mater and they asked who I was and I explained it was my brother and he said could you get your mother and father, I think you need to get up here as quick as you can like, things don’t look too good. I went up there but a I got to the hospital there was two police men waiting to leave with Terence’s clothes. So I called them, I said ‘what are you doing; you are telling us Terence committed suicide’ I said. ‘Does that not mean we’re entitled to his personal effects?’ The Guard turns around and he says ‘Well all I can tell you is’ he goes, ‘we’re investigating this case, we believe something went wrong in that cell’ and I says ‘you don’t say so!’ Obviously something went wrong’ I said, ‘me brother’s in a bad state in there.’ So he turns around and goes ‘We’re taking these clothes because we believe there will be criminal charges to follow.’ So I took that that they believe that something untoward happened to Terence and that it wasn’t by his own hand. So I asked the nurse the nurse and the doctor that was there to itemise every bit of clothes that they were taking. I asked what happened to Terence; how did he end up here? The says that he was after taking the laces of his runners of his and tried to commit suicide by putting them around a light switch; gouging the wall out—he was held in a suicide proof cell at this time. So what happened was when they were bringing the clothes out I noticed that Terence’s runners were laced up and I said to the Garda ‘You said he did this with his laces from his runners.’ All I know then is that the press release that night was I changed from the laces from his runners to the laces from his tracksuit bottoms.
Anyway that was the situation with the police then. As they left, a few other police cars came out and started tormenting us then, parking themselves in the ambulance bay; making a laugh of us; trying to taunt us; thinking that we’d react but I was saying we’ve more pressing things with Terence in the condition that he was, although tempers were a bit flare at that time. So anyhow Terence went up fro the hospital, up from the accident and emergency, brought up to intensive care and while he was there, we noticed bruising... We asked the doctors could they photograph or would we photograph first with our mobile phones and they said no, and so that what is the procedure in a case like this is that they’ll do the photographs themselves. So the next day they took something from up to fifteen to twenty still photographs of Terence’s body and there appeared to be extensive bruising...which completely contradicts the Garda press release where it states that there was no bruising whatsoever on Terence’s body noticed by them or by the paramedics that came. We believe the very fact that they brought my mother to St James’ Hospital knowing full well that Terence was in the Matter was to disorientate us. Now if that isn’t bad enough when they first apparently found Terence in the cell it took them nine and a half minutes to ring an ambulance. When the ambulance men came Terence wasn’t found in a cell, he was found in a hall up at the main desk in the station. Then we contacted a solicitor at the hospital and she applied for a preservation order to preserve the cell for future technical examinations by our engineers and legal team as well as seasoned legal documents pertaining to the case. When we got the custody records, custody records were altered. The arresting Guards’ names were scribbled out and in effect that there was no arresting Guards whatsoever. By all accounts Terence shouldn’t even have been there. Not only that, the cell which had a court order preserving the cell for future technical examination was renovated almost immediately before our technical team could get to examine it and the alleged light switch that Terence was supposed to have tried to hang himself from was removed with the contractor that renovated the cell and we have no access to it. We think it’s a potential crime scene. These are people that deal with crime scenes all the time should that the importance of the situation, of the cell, that everything should be kept secure, forensic proof stored, etc., but all that went missing.
ESTHER: The doctor gave us 48 hours. They told us, the family, we should sit there.
LARRY: It was touch and go; they said he wouldn’t make it to the weekend. This happened on the Thursday; on the Friday the said ‘he wouldn’t make it to the weekend—we’d be lucky if he does’
ESTHER: We asked the doctor, he was a consultant, Dr Kelly the Neurologist; we asked why, what causes the fluid, how did he develop the fluid?
LARRY: What he said was the main trouble with Terence is all his organs and all are working perfect but he has a cerebral oedema which is a swelling of the brain and also with a lot of fluid from the top of the brain and down to the stem part. I was there, I said to the doctor what causes something like that to happen, and he said the reason Terence is like that is from the major blow or bang he received to the head. So that made us think that there’s something not right here. Terence committed suicide where he was supposed to have hung himself from two and a half feet, a light-switch that was counter-sunk into the wall? And not only that, Terence was supposed to be asleep by the custody records, and then decided to wake up and commit suicide, which is something we personally believe wouldn’t be the actions of a suicidal man. More to the point, Terence comes from a large family, he was very well liked. If there was any personal trauma or there was anything bothering him he knows, he knew that he could’ve come to anyone of us. D’ya know what I mean, there’s nothing with the benefit of hindsight, there’s nothing that indicates to us that he was going through any personal trauma whatsoever, nothing at all. On the morning that happened Terence was in great humour, great form; Terence didn’t know he was going to be arrested that day, d’ya know what I mean.
ESTHER: And just to make it clear, my soon had nothing to do with the stolen car.
LARRY: The car was taken the night before, Terence didn’t leave the house until 5 minutes before, as me ma was explaining just to get a paint brush…but that is neither here nor there; whether he did or didn’t we do not believe that Terrence is responsible for his own death. Terence was a lovely, happy, fun lovin’...
ESTHER: He was well like around here.
LARRY: Loved life ya know.
ESTHER: The most decentest person you could come across.
LARRY: It’s just everything…as I said, with the benefit of hindsight there’s nothing we can see that indicates to us that there was anything wrong Terence—nothing whatsoever.
We find now that we have to fight tooth and nail to access to Terence’s clothes. We believe, in the fairness of justice and truth that we get the answers of what happened on June 2nd in Store St, that it’s imperative that we get the clothes independently forensically examined.
INTERVIEWER: Given that the DPP has seen that the case isn’t fit for further prosecution, do you know the reason for the state retaining possession of Terence’s clothes?
ESTHER: I find that very strange in itself that, well it didn’t come as a surprise to us—I didn’t believe they were going to charge anybody. But I find it disgusting to the memory of Terence that the Minister for Justice can form his opinion that Terence was responsible for his own death on the basis of this DPP’s report without even considering the outcome of a future inquest. Now we as a family, even with an inquest ongoing, we’ll still call for an independent inquiry because there’s many questions that we want answered that outside the remit of the Coroner’s Court, like some of the questions I’ve said here. I think it’s disgraceful that my mother has to be put through courts, just to get Terence’s personal effects and we can’t understand why they won’t give them to us. First of all they were taken illegally because there was no legal jurisdiction for them to take them in the first place—they said that Terence committed suicide so therefore by law we should be given his personal effects straight away. That wasn’t the case. We applied through the courts through a police property act to gain access to his clothes and we still can’t get them. We’re told by one court that the Coroner’s Court can give us access and then we’re told by the Coroner’s court that it’s up to the District Court to give us access to the clothes, so we’re stuck between a rock and a hard place there. But we believe that the longer the clothes, the longer we haven’t got them the more chance they have of being forensically damaged. We would be concerned as to how they are actually being stored as well because I think that could be detrimental to the outcome, if there’s any forensic evidence on them.
We’re not about blame, we’re not about revenge, all we’re about is finding out what happened to Terence on that day. It’s not a lot to ask—I’ve to sit and watch me ma crying everyday; up praying at all hours of the morning d’ya know what I mean, and when Terence was in hospital, praying for her son; that’s a very hard thing to have to look at. As I said all we want is to know what happened. We’re not about revenge. We’ve organised campaigns to lobby the government, to establish an independent inquiry—some independent mechanism of investigation to find out what happened and we don’t seem to be getting anywhere, although the Minister for Justice has said through the media that he’d be willing to meet the family at some stage after the inquest. Well as we explained earlier on the questions that we have to ask the minister are outside the remit of the Coroner’s Court and the Coroner cannot answer these questions because they don’t pertain to his line of investigation. We’ve written to Minister McDowell, I’ve publicly asked him for a meeting and he said he would; now he wants a letter in writing of me which I’ve sent the other day. We believe that this stalling is a mechanism; is trying to wear us down; for a start, the very fact that they withdraw funding. First of all we’re getting a letter, three minutes before—three times we’re in the court for mention, the second time we were there, up to three minutes before the case was closing we get a fax sent from the Dep. of Justice to the solicitor saying they were willing to assist us in some way with financial aid toward bringing independent forensic experts from England to examine the clothes. But then when we dropped the police property act, (although we dropped it with a view to re-entering) we go up to the Coroner’s Court the last time and funding has been withdrawn on the basis that the forensic experts in Ireland are independent of the state and that we should be happy with them. Now I don’t understand what’s goin’ on there; I mean we’re getting a letter in good faith and then it’s withdrawn. As I said it’s a delaying tactic, trying to stone wall us, I believe trying to wear us down but this type of going on will only spur us on more. We’re about getting answers, we’re about finding out what happened to my brother on the day and no matter what, we’re in this for the long haul, we’re not going away until we get answers; the truth. We’ll continue to lobby and protest…I think it’s only fair you know: you have them there talking about equality in this country and how every man, woman and child being equal—This is not an equal society; it’s far from ya know. I mean if this happened in a middle class area—and I don’t want to get into some kinda class struggle—I mean there’d be an independent inquiry set up almost immediately. I mean I don’t think they put the same kind of value on people’s lives from these types of areas than they would from middle class areas and that’s really how I feel about this.
INTERVIEWER: Do you think Terence would even be dead if he was from a different area?
LARRY: No I don’t think Terence would be dead at all. I’ll tell you one thing; Terrence was being constantly harassed by the police. He was not a serious criminal, albeit he was involved in petty impish sort of things. Only a week before this happened, the same arresting Guard damaged Terence’s arm.
ESTHER: We have an invoice from the Mater Hospital saying he was up there on that date.
LARRY: We are after applying for the records of the hospital to say what Terrence was complaining about on that day. Also we have in the custody records where they denied that there was any bruising on Terrence’s body on admission to the Garda station, they made reference to the bruising on Terence’s arm. See the custody records is a legal document and this contradicts what they said. We don’t know what happened that day: all we want the truth but they’re leading us to think something untoward went wrong, d’ya know what I mean. The very fact that they’re giving us the run around that we have to fight for everything that they’re giving funding, they’re taking it back: it just leads us to think that they don’t want us to get to the truth or that the truth might be a bit bigger than what we really think happened, d’ya know what I mean.
INTERVIEWER: Since the case, have you been harassed by the Guards?
LARRY: Well I’m constantly taunted by the police. Now they don’t pull me in like they use to but I think that…I’d be no bother naming and shaming any Guard that pulls me at this stage, but they’re harassing my younger brother. My older brother while Terence was in hospital was coming home from the hospital and a Garda pulled him and they were slagging him; ‘how is your brother?’ and giving it all this [making gesture of a noose around the neck], saying how is Fuzzy (his nickname was Fuzzy) and he told them to ‘”F” off’ and he got two months in prison for that! Two days after this happened to Terence they arrested my younger brother who’s 16; they took his runners off, took his laces out, thrown his runners in the canal, brought him around to the lane then saying ‘Will you do it like we got your brother to do it?’; you know, all this sort of carry on…like, they’re constantly giving it all that to me [gesturing “up yours” with both hands], or else trying to indicate you know like, hanging [gesturing again]. Now I will say this: I know my brother didn’t commit suicide, I don’t know what happened on the day but my brother didn’t commit suicide.
ESTHER: No, he never suffered from any depression.
LARRY: As me ma said…
ESTHER: If he’d any problems he’d sit and talk about them; we’re a very close-knit family.
LARRY: Very close: you can see by the way we were; you see all Terence’s friends that day [referring to a recent fundraiser night]. Terence was very well liked. You ask them; there’s not one person in this area who thinks Terrence was responsible for his own death.
ESTHER: He was well liked, he was well liked. But I’m just saying we’re not giving up till we get justice, and if Minister McDowell has nothing to hide why can he not talk to us before the inquest.
LARRY: Exactly, that’s a very good point me ma just made. What I’m saying to you is we would have no problem accepting Terence committed suicide but what leads us to think otherwise is what appears to be a concerted cover-up after Terence was admitted to hospital, you know, I mean we don’t believe Terence committed suicide but if we weren’t sure what makes us very unsure now is the actions of the Gardaí after what happened to Terence.
INTERVIEWER: In the broader media, given the lack of coverage of case do you think there was a presumption of guilt then?
LARRY: With the police?
INTERVIEWER: Well from the media even…
LARRY: That Terence was responsible?
INTERVIEWER: Responsible for the theft
LARRY: Oh that he was guilty; I beg your pardon. Well from the outset there was very very scant media coverage and I do believe they thought Terence was responsible but what I have noticed is the wording and how they even—though it’s still fairly short coverage—the wording and the actual amount of coverage has changed somewhat. I do think they’re kinda sitting of the fence now, that they’re not sure, because I have been invited by umpteen people to do interviews, and each time they do it they’re only allowed say so much which is not good enough for us. We’re not here to accuse, we’re here for answers. That’s all we’re here for; to find out what happened.
ESTHER: There’s no accusations, we just want answers to what happened.
LARRY: We’re not accusing anybody of doing anything. All I know is that my brother didn’t take his own life. We don’t know who did it but we’re not saying anyone, we’re not saying it was the police we don’t know what happened—we just know that…well we don’t know; I believe Terrence didn’t take his own life and so do everyone else in this community.
ESTHER: I’ll tell you out straight: someone’s responsible for my son’s death; I don’t care—I seriously believe someone’s responsible.
LARRY: I don’t believe it’s Terence; that’s all I can say.
ESTHER: We’ll continue fighting till we get justice.
LARRY: Now this is strange: there was two bean Gardaí that knocked on this door while Terrence was in hospital and one of the broke down crying saying to me young sister Orla that Terence was lovely fella and she didn’t believe Terence took his own life or tried to commit suicide and she invited my young sister Orla who was 17 at the time to come down and look at the cell before they changed it; before the renovation. They says ‘come down now’. We believe that they were trying to say something to Orla, trying to tell Orla to come down and look at the cell, d’ya know what I mean. But Orla was afraid d’ya know what I mean.
ESTHER: But Orla was, eventually Orla was gonna go down but I got annoyed because she was going down without parents supervision, without an adult and I thought it very wrong to bring a girl of that age down to police station after what happened to her brother and she had no parental guidance with her.
LARRY: Or even any kind of support mechanism because this would been a harrowing experience for her to go down and actually look at a cell that he was allegedly after trying to commit suicide in, but I believe there was an ulterior motive for why they trying to bring Orla down there; the very fact that one of them was saying Terence was…that one of them was crying at our door, d’ya know what I mean like, tears…
ESTHER: She was actually crying at the door as she says Terence was lovely chap.
LARRY: And that she didn’t believe Terence was responsible either. And I’ve been pulled by the police but I know it’s only hearsay but none of them, well most of them that have actually pulled me have said they ‘don’t want to go into that’; ‘I wasn’t there’; that they weren’t there, that we should just rely on the yoke but they’re not saying that Terence did it. It’s just the smart c***s going by with their f***ing yokes that won’t…
LARRY: that won’t stop and talk—sorry, I beg your pardon—you know, giving it all this like they have a noose around their neck [gesturing], d’ya know what I mean.
ESTHER: That’s what they’re saying to us now.
LARRY: Obviously somebody knows what happened d’ya know what I mean. We’re just about getting at the truth that’s all we want.
ESTHER: We just want the truth.
LARRY: I mean we can’t put Terence to rest for two reasons. Terence’s brain is still in the city morgue—he hasn’t even been completely buried properly and plus, until we get answers we can’t put him to rest d’ya know what I mean. But as I say we’re in this for the long haul; we’re not going away, you know what I mean. We will get, I will get the answers for my brother—I promised him when he died that I’ll get the answers for and I will get the answers.
ESTHER: I mean to look at your child, three and a half months deteriorating in front of you and you couldn’t do nothing is very very hard…your own family.
LARRY: That’s another thing she’s saying there: for someone who wanted to take his own life he fought very hard to keep it in the end.
LARRY: Three and a half months d’ya know what I mean, and the doctors were saying like—and they’re dealing with sick people—that he has some strength; he has some determination, like I think that does boil down to determination.
ESTHER: He’d a strong heart.
LARRY: Does that look like someone who wanted to take their own life?
ESTHER: When my son died they brought him back.
LARRY: Forty minutes without oxygen, they still brought him back.
ESTHER: It was that length, and when he was outside they waited nine and a half minutes to call an ambulance.
LARRY: What did they do in that nine and a half minutes; could you tell me?
ESTHER: And by the way, they wouldn’t let the ambulance men into the police station.
LARRY: They wouldn’t let them view the cell either. We have a copy of the statements taken by the paramedics that day.
ESTHER: And the medical records and everything.
LARRY: Another thing that I find very strange about this case and any other death in Garda custody is there seems to be one Guard investigating the lot: Inspector Oliver Hanley. He has served twenty years in Store St and I find it sick that Minister McDowell could appoint him to investigate his friends—d’ya know what I mean. My brother was supposed to have committed suicide in Store St yet they appoint an investigating Guard who served twenty years there: what’s that all about, d’ya know what I mean? Obviously they assumed that we would accept that Terrence committed suicide and that this would go away for them but they knocked on the wrong door when this happened to my brother.
ESTHER: And then they renovated the cell after that.
LARRY: We went into that—well this is another thing: we have people lying on hospital trolleys for three days, we kids that have to use outside toilets in schools and yet they can renovate a brand new building that’s only ten years old over a weekend! What were they trying to hide, d’ya know what I mean? I find that very strange. There they are lobbying to get hospital wings opened up and yet can do that within a weekend, renovate a cell at the cost of a couple of thousand—what’s going on there? That only adds to our paranoia that something amiss went wrong.
ESTHER: Every check in that police cell was ‘prisoner asleep’; ‘asleep’; ‘asleep’.
LARRY: ‘Prisoner asleep—all seems to be in order’, but not at any point did that fella go in and…Terence could have been unconscious since the minute he went in. We don’t know what happened; we don’t want to get into speculation but what we do believe…
ESTHER: He didn’t do it to himself.
LARRY: Terence didn’t take his own life
ESTHER: There’s no way—someone’s responsible for my son…and they have to be answered for, you know. The answers have to come out. I’m just not happy; our family’s…
LARRY: Destroyed; destroyed.
ESTHER: It has destroyed my whole family.
LARRY: I mean like…
ESTHER: My youngest son is very depressed.
LARRY: Over losing his brother, he’s very angry.
INTERVIEWER: And of course there will never be any chance of co-operation between the police and kids who’ve grown with an experience of this happening to one of their friends.
LARRY: Well this is not an isolated case as you well know. I mean there’s 22 deaths since ’97 in Garda custody in this state. Four of them happened in Store St police station since 2001. Four deaths in Store St in a perfectly suicide proof station, or so they profess, in the matter of four years you have four deaths; that’s a death a year…d’ya know what I mean; all the young fellas appear to be the same age d’ya know what I mean; all of them kind of have the same type of form. There’s something not right there. But we’ll get to the answers we’re looking for. If it was that Terrence took his own life we could accept that, but it has to be proven to us, d’ya know what I mean, and we have to be given the exact warts and all of what happened that day but we’re finding like we’re going against a brick wall. We’ve no co-operation from the Minister for Justice, no co-operation from the Attorney General; from the Chief State Solicitor’s Office…everything we have to fight for but we will we do it. I think they think that they’ll wear us down. That’s only making us more angry and determined.
ESTHER: And minister McDowell better listen; they’re not going to wear us down—we’re going to continue for my son, as long as it takes to get justice, I don’t care.
LARRY: We’re not going away.
ESTHER: Even if it comes to our only family, we’re there together all the way.
LARRY: Well that’s it; we’ve got great support in this area.
ESTHER: Oh we have; we’ve great support.
LARRY: And don’t forget that the Taoiseach is the elected representative for the north inner city. I mean, from what happens around here with Garda and public relations, it’s not doing the government any justice around here. You know I don’t think that they realize it that a lot of young fellas around here...Terence was old enough to vote; all his mates see who and what’s doing what for our campaign and we’ve great support so whoever’s the one who’s helping us is going to be the one who’s getting the votes in the next election and that’s the way it is, and I promised that whoever does anything for us will be getting our...now we’re a big family and we all live in the north inner city and that’s who’ll be getting our votes in the next election.
ESTHER: Terence has a lot of friends.
LARRY: And all his friends will be voting and family...
INTERVIEWER: One point regarding the preservation order...what excuse was give for breaching it?
LARRY: The order was so that our team could go in and examine it as everything was, “in situ“, but when the legal team got there with engineers the cell was renovated completely; by their own words, ‘surgically cleaned’—I don’t think for the betterment, for the better treatment of the next person to go in or they were looking after his health by surgically cleaning the cell, but when our team got down...but McDowell said he had to renovate the cell because he was worried about the next prisoners that would end up in it plus he had to keep the cell open, because that’s a drunk tank on the weekend; he needed the space; spare cells you know, because there’s an awful lot of arrests on the weekend. But I mean like there’s loads of other stations in the north inner city that they could be brought to—if that was a bank robbery d’ya know what I mean, all that evidence wouldn’t have gone missing.
ESTHER: It’d be all protected, yeah.
LARRY: I just don’t think they bargained for someone to challenge what happened that day or to ask questions about it and they knocked on the wrong door when this happened to my family; to my brother.
ESTHER: And if my son was to peel that away he’d have marks on his nails; my son had no such marks.
LARRY: No marks—they said he pulled a concrete wall asunder with his bare hands in the matter of ten minutes. Now that’s impossible.
ESTHER: There’s no way he could do that; it’s impossible.
LARRY: I mean there’s a lot of inconsistencies about...all the accounts are all inconsistent d’ya know what I mean; by different state bodies as I mentioned earlier on, when he eventually went up to the hospital d’ya know what I mean. We need an independent public inquiry to get to the truth of what happened on June 2nd in Store St.
ESTHER: We need to get it...and our solicitor has been marvellous for us.
LARRY: The solicitor has yeah; Yvonne Banbury, she’s part of Ferry solicitors, has been very helpful in more ways than she’s legally supposed to be...she’s been great support to me ma.
ESTHER: She went up to the Matter and visited Terence.
LARRY: She visited Terence while he was in hospital you know.
INTERVIEWER: Was there any providence of support on the part of the state?
LARRY: No...no, no; the state has completely ignored us. I think they were just hoping that we were a bad dream and that we were gonna go away.
ESTHER: Just forget about it and it might put it under the carpet.
LARRY: But we’re not goin away; I just can’t.
ESTHER: It can’t go away.
LARRY: I can’t suggest that any stronger that: we ain’t going away. We’re in this for the long haul no matter...We’re in this for the duration.
ESTHER: As long as it takes we’re here for that.
LARRY: I mean like there’s the Minister for Justice...like people might say that you get nowhere; I hate that. That’s the way the state is the way it is coz people are afraid to stand up and be counted or they’re afraid to challenge d’ya know what I mean. The way I look at it is: in the short amount of time that this happened we’ve achieved; we’ve got recognition by the minister—he wants to meet the family at some stage. At least we’re making progress...
But we’re not going away and we’ll continue to lobby because we need to know what happened on that day. If there’s any way of us of putting this to rest, we need to find out the truth of what happened on that day.
Footage of from this interview along with other material documenting the family's campaign for Justice will be screened at the Digital Hub Warehouse, D8, from June 9th to 18th.