Widow of murdered RUC officer ‘disgusted’ at complaint by husband’s killer

June Proctor, as she then was, pictured with her son John Jnr in April 1982, seven months after her husband was murdered
June Proctor, as she then was, pictured with her son John Jnr in April 1982, seven months after her husband was murdered

The widow of a murdered police officer has said she is “disgusted” that her husband’s killer tried to have her prosecuted over comments she made in a newspaper.

June McMullin had just given birth to a son when her husband John Proctor, 25, was gunned down by the IRA in the car park of the Mid-Ulster Hospital in Magherafelt in 1981.

John Proctor was murdered after visiting his newborn son in hospital

John Proctor was murdered after visiting his newborn son in hospital

Seamus Kearney from Maghera was handed a 20-year prison sentence in 2013 for his involvement in the IRA murder but was released last month, after just under two years in prison, under the terms of the Good Friday Agreement.

In a previous article, Mrs McMullin said: “We would have saved a lot of money if there had been a bullet put in Kearney, instead of wasting all this money on a court case.”

Speaking for the first time about Kearney’s complaint to police, Mrs McMullin said that, although the newspaper comments reflect her true feelings, they were “taken out of context” in the article and not intended for publication.

“The reporter asked me how I would have felt if Kearney had been shot instead of being arrested, so I made the comment. But I’ve no remorse about saying it,” she said.

Seamus Kearney was released last month after serving just two years for his part in the murder

Seamus Kearney was released last month after serving just two years for his part in the murder

Mrs McMullin said her first reaction was that the call she received from police two weeks ago was a prank. “It knocked me for six. I’m just disgusted about the whole thing,” she added.

Last month, Mrs McMullin lost a High Court judicial review to prevent Kearney from being allowed out of prison on weekend release.

A PSNI spokesman said: “Police investigated a complaint regarding comments made in a newspaper article. Inquiries have been completed and a decision made to take no further action at this time.”

A spokeswoman for the PPS said: “While a full file was not received from the PSNI in relation to these allegations, we did receive a request for prosecutorial advice and have responded to that.”

In December 2013 Kearney was convicted based on DNA evidence from a cigarette butt found among spent bullet casings at the scene.

At the trial in November 2013, Judge David McFarland said he was satisfied Kearney was either the gunman, getaway driver or an occupant of the car providing support for the killing on September 1981.

Kearney, 57, had denied involvement in the murder, or possessing the Armalite AR15 assault rifle used to shoot Mr Proctor.

The Reserve Constable’s widow heard the gunshots that killed her husband from the hospital where she had just given birth to their second son, John Jnr.

Kearney was denied a request for pre-release leave over St Patrick’s weekend this year.