Sir Norman Bettison, the most senior serving police officer who was involved with South Yorkshire Police's discredited Hillsborough operation, said today he had "nothing to hide".
Bettison, now the Chief Constable of West Yorkshire, has faced calls to quit following the publication of an independent report into the tragedy in which 96 Liverpool fans were killed.
In a statement today he insisted the behaviour of some fans in the stadium made the job of the police "harder than it needed to be".
He also defended his role in the aftermath of April 15, 1989, saying: "I never altered a statement nor asked for one to be altered."
Yesterday's damning report, published by the Hillsborough Independent Panel, laid bare a shocking cover-up which attempted to shift the blame on to its 96 victims.
The panel found that 164 police statements were altered, 116 of them to remove or alter "unfavourable" comments about the policing of the match and the unfolding disaster.
It said: "The evidence shows conclusively that Liverpool fans neither caused nor contributed to the deaths of 96 men, women and children."
The families of the football supporters killed 23 years ago said the report had vindicated them, and have pledged to carry on their fight by pursuing criminal prosecutions against those who they said should "hang their heads in shame".
Bettison was an off-duty South Yorkshire Police inspector when he attended the game, and was involved in an internal inquiry held by the force in its aftermath.
He said: "Fans' behaviour, to the extent that it was relevant at all, made the job of the police, in the crush outside Leppings Lane turnstiles, harder than it needed to be.
"But it didn't cause the disaster any more than the sunny day that encouraged people to linger outside the stadium as kick-off approached.
"I held those views then, I hold them now."
Bettison, who is a former chief constable of Merseyside, added: "I really welcome the disclosure of all the facts that can be known about the Hillsborough tragedy because I have absolutely nothing to hide.
"I read the 395-page report from cover to cover last night and that remains my position.
"The panel, in my view, has produced a piece of work that will stand the test of time and scrutiny."
There was no expression of support for Bettison from Downing Street today when Prime Minister David Cameron's official spokesman was questioned by reporters on his position.
The spokesman was asked several times at a press briefing whether the prime minister continued to have "faith" in Bettison as chief constable, but declined to answer directly.
"The prime minister made a statement to the House of Commons yesterday setting out his views on this issue," the spokesman replied.
Margaret Aspinall, chairwoman of the Hillsborough Families Support Group, who lost her son James, 18, in the tragedy, said she was angered by Bettison's statement.
"He should do the decent thing and resign, no matter what he is saying in his statement today.
"He is still saying the fans made the job more difficult for the police.
"He ought to be ashamed of himself.
"Do the decent thing, Mr Bettison, resign."