New police probe into Hegarty killing

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The PPS move follows an inquest held last December which found that the teenager posed no risk when he was shot. This second inquest was ordered after the Historical Enquiries Team reported that the initial police investigation was “hopelessly inadequate and dreadful.”

The PPS have now contacted PSNI Chief Constable Matt Baggot and asked him to carry out further investigations into the killing.

The move has been welcomed by the teenager’s relatives. His sister, Margaret Brady, said the family will continue to campaign until the soldier who shot her brother, known only as soldier B, is prosecuted.

“We welcome this move and we are hoping that the police will respond with a fresh investigation. They can’t run away from the truth. They did not do anything back then when Daniel was murdered.

“They were a law onto themselves back then but hopefully things have changed now,” she said.

Mrs Brady also said she is determined to see soldier B in court. “How can any human being shoot a child in the head at point blank range and leave him for dead. It is unimaginable, but it did happen.

“There is nothing to fear from truth or justice and we intend on this 40th anniversary of Daniel’s murder to continue our quest for justice as it is the right thing to do and the least we can do for our brother. We will allow the process with the PPS to run its course and we will be patient in waiting to see what happens.

“We intend to hold the Ministry of Defence accountable for the killing of Daniel in whatever way we can and we will instigate our own legal proceedings against the MoD if necessary,” she said.

Mrs Brady said getting the truth about her brother’s killing is necessary in order to allow the family to move on. “The only way to deal with the past is to confront it and tell the truth about that happened. That goes for everybody. If I had killed a soldier I would have been prosecuted without a doubt,” she said.

She also said she hopes that the soldier who shot her brother feels remorse for his actions. “He probably has children or even grandchildren now. I hope that when he looks at them he sees Daniel and remembers what he did,” she said.