‘They’ complain about the Gun Laws in Australia being to lax, here’s another point of view – Mick Raven
’71’ Fatal Police shootings since 1996 Port Arthur and Australia’s Strictest Gun Laws in the World – Mick Raven
Excerpt from link above (Remember This is a so called ‘unarmed’ Police ‘Force’) – Mick Raven
In June 1980, hostage Gail Kinchin and her unborn baby were killed in crossfire between West Midlands officers and her boyfriend.
On 24 August 1985 John Shorthouse aged 5 was shot dead in a police raid on his home in Birmingham. The incident produced hostility towards the police over two days after John’s death when a policewoman was dragged from her patrol car and beaten by youths. Following the Shorthouse case, West Midlands police abandoned its practice of training rank-and-file officers for firearms duties and formed a specialist squad.
On 24 April 1995 James Brady, 21, was shot dead in an ambush by police officers acting on a tip-off. He and three friends were thought to be about to steal from a club in Westerhope village, near Newcastle. The torch he had been carrying was mistaken for a firearm.
On 28 April 1995 A prisoner on day release, David Ewin, 38, was shot twice in the stomach by a police officer after he was spotted in a stolen sports car in Barnes, west London. He died in hospital three weeks later.
On 23 September 1996 Diarmuid O’Neill, 27, a suspected IRA terrorist was hit and killed by 10 bullets when officers raided his lodgings in Hammersmith, west London. A February 2000 inquest ruled that the unarmed man was lawfully killed.
On 20 November 1996 David Howell, 40, a mental health patient, was shot dead by police marksmen when he ran amok with a knife in a Birmingham shop and took the manager hostage. An inquest jury later returned a verdict of lawful killing.
On 15 January 1998 James Ashley, 39, was shot and killed by Sussex Police while naked and unarmed during a drugs raid at his flat. The officer who fired the shots was cleared of any wrongdoing after a trial at the Old Bailey.
On 26 February 1998 Michael Fitzgerald, 32, was shot in the chest by police in Bedford after a two-hour stand-off. Neighbours had mistaken him for a burglar. It later emerged that he was in his own home and carrying a fake gun.
On 10 April 1999 Devon and Cornwall police fatally shot Antony Kitts in Falmouth. He was reported to have threatened officers with what they thought was a sniper rifle. It turned out to be an air rifle. An inquest in 2000 returned a verdict of lawful killing.
In June 1999 Derek Bateman, 47, of Surrey was shot by a single bullet through the heart after his girlfriend went to a neighbour’s house and telephoned the police, telling them he was armed and had been threatening to shoot her. It was later determined that the weapon he had brandished at the police was an air pistol.
On 22 September 1999 Harry Stanley, a painter and decorator, born in Bellshill near Glasgow, was walking home when he was shot dead by two Metropolitan Police officers following an erroneous report that he was carrying a sawn-off shotgun in a plastic bag. The officers challenged Mr Stanley from behind. As he turned to face them they shot him dead at a distance of 5 metres. It later emerged that the plastic bag actually contained a broken table leg that Stanley’s brother had just fixed for him. Following numerous enquiries (in November 2004 a jury returned a verdict of unlawful killing) both officers were exonerated after 6 years of court cases and inquiries. It was found that neither officer was liable for criminal charges nor would face any disciplinary sanctions. However, the report did make notable recommendations to the police on the post-incident procedure to be followed after a shooting and about challenging members of the public from behind.
On 24 September 2000 Kirk Davies, 30, died after being shot by a West Yorkshire police officer in Wakefield. He had an air rifle and had threatened a police officer earlier in the evening.
On 30 October 2000 Patrick O’Donnell, 19, was shot by a Metropolitan police officer after a siege at a house in Islington, north London, in which he took his mother and girlfriend hostage.
On 12 July 2001 Mr Andrew Kernan, 37, a gardener from Wavertree in Liverpool was shot dead in the street by the second of two shots fired by officers of the Merseyside Police Force. The officers had been called to the scene by the victim’s mother, Marie Kernan, who had also requested a psychiatric medical team attend her home because her schizophrenic son, Andrew Kernan, was being aggressive. At least four police officers from the Merseyside force went to Mrs Kernan’s flat but Andrew Kernan ran into the street, dressed in his pyjamas, wielding a Katana.Mr Kernan slashed off the wing mirror of one of the police cars. After negotiating with him for 25 minutes and using CS gas, officers fired two shots. The second bullet hit Mr Kernan in the chest and he died on the way to hospital. In the case of Andrew Kernan, the Chief Constable of Merseyside Police Norman Bettison took the unusual step of sending a hand-written letter to Marie Kernan with his apologies. The then Home Secretary David Blunkett ordered a review of how armed police were used, and the dead man’s mother, Marie Kernan, 59, commented at the time:
“You don’t kill somebody with a mental illness. I demand justice for Andrew and won’t rest until I get an answer.”
However, a verdict of lawful killing was returned by the jury at Liverpool District Coroner’s Court on 9 December 2004, and the Coroner, Andre Rebello, praised the actions of the officers at the scene. The IPCA Commissioner for the North West, Mike Franklin, stated that
“the officers involved in this case were presented with a rapidly evolving scenario… Firearms officers at the scene acted bravely and the investigation has found no evidence that their actions fell below that required or expected of them.”
On 30 April 2005, Azelle Rodney, from London, was shot dead by armed officers of the Metropolitan Police. In August 2007, coroner Andrew Walker, sitting at Hornsey North London, said that a full inquest into Rodney’s death could not be held because of the large number of redactions in police officers’ statements. In July 2013 a judicial inquiry found that the Authorised Firearms Officer who fired the fatal shots had “no lawful justification” for opening fire. The case was referred to the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) to determine whether a prosecution should be launched.
On 22 July 2005, Jean Charles de Menezes, a Brazilian national living in London, was shot dead by unnamed Metropolitan Police officers on board an Underground train at Stockwell tube station, in the belief he was a suicide bomber. He was shot in the back of the head 7 times. Initially, police claimed incorrectly that he was wearing bulky clothing and that he had vaulted the ticket barriers running from police when challenged, but did not modify their statement until the correct information was leaked to the press. They later issued an apology, saying that they had mistaken him for a suspect in the previous day’s failed bombings and acknowledging that de Menezes in fact had no explosives and was unconnected with the attempted bombings. Following an investigation by the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC), the Crown Prosecution Service announced on 17 July 2006, that no charges would be brought against any individual officers in relation to the death of Jean Charles. Sir Ian Blair, Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police when the shooting occurred will, however, face charges under Health and Safety legislation from his professional—rather than personal—capacity. The family of Jean Charles has called on the government to open a public inquiry into the shooting.
In June 2007 Anne Sanderson was shot dead by an armed officer in Sevenoaks, Kent after being seen with what was later identified as a BB gun, which she refused to relinquish when challenged by police. It was the first fatal shooting of a woman by UK Police in 27 years (and first time ever that the shooting was deliberate). A month previously police officers had found notes in Sanderson’s car which had suicidal connotations, but no action was taken. A subsequent IPCC investigation noted this, as well as other procedural issues in the investigation, but stated that they “did not have a negative impact on the incident’s outcome”. In addition, the report said that officers involved “performed their duties conscientiously and diligently” and that an inquest jury returned a verdict of lawful killing.
On 6 May 2008 Mark Saunders, a barrister, was shot by police following a siege at his home in Markham Square, Chelsea, London.
On 4 August 2011, Mark Duggan was shot dead by the MPS, sparking massive riots across London. Four officers are being investigated in the incident, although it was speculated “in leaks from official sources to The Times newspaper… that the firearms officer [would] be cleared of any wrongdoing on the basis that he had “an honest-held belief that he was in imminent danger of him or his colleagues being shot”.
On 3 March 2012, Anthony Grainger was shot dead in Cheshire by an armed Greater Manchester Police officer whilst sitting in a stolen car. Grainger was unarmed at the time of the shooting. Chief Constable Peter Fahy was charged under health and safety legislation over the shooting.
Enough said – Mick Raven