Robert McMullan was murdered 50 years ago today.

The family of Robert McMullan is releasing critical new evidence regarding the murder of the unarmed civilian to coincide with the 50th anniversary of his death which occurred on the night of 13th May 1972.

Robert McMullan was a married, 32-year-old father of 4 children who was shot dead in New Barnsley Park, West Belfast, near his home.

No organisation claimed the killing although locals believed a British Army gunman was guilty.

New evidence Paper Trail discovered proves that a British soldier from B Company 1 Kings Regiment fired into New Barnsley Park at the time Robert McMullan was shot dead [witnesses timed his killing between 8-8:30pm].

The British Army report alleged a Kingsman returned fire after two shots were fired at the British Army location and there were no casualties.

“2029 [8:29pm] 2 Shots from New Barnsley Park at this location. 1 shot returned. No casualties – HV [high velocity]”

Robert McMullan 13th May 1972 Highlighted

 

Henry Taggart 1970s
Robert McMullan
Robert McMullan New Barnsley Park Map
between Unrecorded, Uninvestigated Shooting

Nevertheless, this British Army shooting into New Barnsley Park - when and where Robert McMullan was killed - was not recorded in British Army Battalion, Brigade, or Headquarters Northern Ireland files which Paper Trail sourced over the last 8 years.

Furthermore, this British Army shooting was also not recorded in British Army logs given to the Historical Enquiries Team (HET).

Worryingly, HET recorded that the original police investigation file had disappeared and the bullet which hit the victim in the belly was never recovered.

HET recorded in its report [page 22] into the murder of Robert McMullan:

“Witnesses said they heard either one or two gunshots immediately before Robert fell… It was never established who fired the shot that killed Robert… Because the original investigation file has not been found, it is not possible to say what inquiries were made during the investigation into his death. The review has not uncovered any new lines of enquiry or investigative opportunities that could bring about the identification of the person that shot Robert.”

This is new evidence of yet another Killer Kings Regiment shooting incident that was not reported or investigated at the time but subsequently covered up - only to be discovered by Paper Trail decades later.

Robert McMullan's son, John, said:

"This is new evidence of a shooting incident at the time and place of our father's murder. We have long believed that our father was killed by a British soldier and this evidence has uncovered an unreported and uninvestigated shooting by the Kings Regiment. We now know that this very regiment was guilty of many murders and cover-ups between April and August of 1972."

"The RUC failed us in 1972 and the Historical Enquiries Team failed us again recently so we have taken this new evidence to our legal team at Ó Muirigh Solicitors as we are still fighting for truth and justice half a century after our father was murdered."

Other killings by the Kings Regiment include those of schoolgirl Martha Campbell less than 24 hours later, James Bonner on 25th June, the Springhill-Westrock Massacre on 9th July, and Thomas Mills on 18th July.

Just today, the Coroner ruled that the Kings' soldier who killed Mr. Mills was "completely unjustified" and sent a file on the killing to the Director of Public Prosecutions - M4, the cipher used for the Killer Kingsman, did a no-show to the inquest and is being dealt with separately.

B Company Kings Regiment also helped cover-up the Kelly’s Bar Massacre which occurred a few hours before the killing of Robert McMullan.

The weekend beginning 13th May was the most violent since the prorogation of Stormont and imposition of Direct Rule six weeks before, and heralded a sharp escalation of violence until July, the bloodiest month of the conflict.

We know the human devastation killings leave in their wake, but how much these extra-judicial murders and cover-ups impacted the community and the conflict has yet to be properly investigated.

To begin, we need a proper investigation into the Killer Kings Regiment and the murders of civilians during its 4-month tour of duty in West Belfast in the summer of '72.

Unrecorded, Uninvestigated Shooting

Nevertheless, this British Army shooting into New Barnsley Park - when and where Robert McMullan was killed - was not recorded in British Army Battalion, Brigade, or Headquarters Northern Ireland files which Paper Trail sourced over the last 8 years.

Furthermore, this British Army shooting was also not recorded in British Army logs given to the Historical Enquiries Team (HET).

Worryingly, HET recorded that the original police investigation file had disappeared and the bullet which hit the victim in the belly was never recovered.

HET recorded in its report [page 22] into the murder of Robert McMullan:

“Witnesses said they heard either one or two gunshots immediately before Robert fell… It was never established who fired the shot that killed Robert… Because the original investigation file has not been found, it is not possible to say what inquiries were made during the investigation into his death. The review has not uncovered any new lines of enquiry or investigative opportunities that could bring about the identification of the person that shot Robert.”

This is new evidence of yet another Killer Kings Regiment shooting incident that was not reported or investigated at the time but subsequently covered up - only to be discovered by Paper Trail decades later.

Robert McMullan's son, John, said:

"This is new evidence of a shooting incident at the time and place of our father's murder. We have long believed that our father was killed by a British soldier and this evidence has uncovered an unreported and uninvestigated shooting by the Kings Regiment. We now know that this very regiment was guilty of many murders and cover-ups between April and August of 1972."

"The RUC failed us in 1972 and the Historical Enquiries Team failed us again recently so we have taken this new evidence to our legal team at Ó Muirigh Solicitors as we are still fighting for truth and justice half a century after our father was murdered."

Other killings by the Kings Regiment include those of schoolgirl Martha Campbell less than 24 hours later, James Bonner on 25th June, the Springhill-Westrock Massacre on 9th July, and Thomas Mills on 18th July.

Just today, the Coroner ruled that the Kings' soldier who killed Mr. Mills was "completely unjustified" and sent a file on the killing to the Director of Public Prosecutions - M4, the cipher used for the Killer Kingsman, did a no-show to the inquest and is being dealt with separately.

B Company Kings Regiment also helped cover-up the Kelly’s Bar Massacre which occurred a few hours before the killing of Robert McMullan.

The weekend beginning 13th May was the most violent since the prorogation of Stormont and imposition of Direct Rule six weeks before, and heralded a sharp escalation of violence until July, the bloodiest month of the conflict.

We know the human devastation killings leave in their wake, but how much these extra-judicial murders and cover-ups impacted the community and the conflict has yet to be properly investigated.

To begin, we need a proper investigation into the Killer Kings Regiment and the murders of civilians during its 4-month tour of duty in West Belfast in the summer of '72.

Trope - Essays and Articles by Ciarán MacAirt

Trope: Essays and Articles

by Ciarán MacAirt.

These essays and articles represent a personal journey, and find him trudging from the killing fields of World War 1 to the back streets of Belfast where death squads prowled.

All of the profits from the sale of this book are donated directly to the charity, Paper Trail, to help fund its work with victims and survivors of the conflict in Ireland and Britain.

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