Charles De Menezes Killing - Update

By sizemore Last edited 161 months ago
Charles De Menezes Killing - Update

ITV has revealed more details about the killing of Charles De Menezes by armed police on the 22nd of July:

documents and photographs confirm that Jean Charles was not carrying any bags, and was wearing a denim jacket, not a bulky winter coat, as had previously been claimed. He was behaving normally, and did not vault the barriers, even stopping to pick up a free newspaper. He started running when we saw a tube at the platform. Police had agreed they would shoot a suspect if he ran.

It seems that extended to if a suspect ran and then sat down once he'd caught his train:

A document describes CCTV footage, which shows Mr de Menezes entered Stockwell station at a "normal walking pace" and descended slowly on an escalator. The document said: "At some point near the bottom he is seen to run across the concourse and enter the carriage before sitting in an available seat.

It was only then the word 'police' was allegedly spoken and De Menezes left his seat. A nearby surveillance officer then intervened and held him back into his seat only for the armed officers to kill him. This is despite the fact that he had no bag, nowhere to conceal explosives and did nothing to suggest that he was anything but another commuter.

In all eleven shots were fired. Three missed.

Police believed that De Menezes could have been Hussain Osman. Both are pictured below.


The Police have declined to comment while the investigation is still under way.

That should give them time to get the new version of events straight. As The Times points out, the evidence contradicts claims from the Metropolitan Police at the time that the Brazilian’s "clothing and his behaviour at the station added to their suspicions", that he vaulted the ticket barrier and was wearing a heavy overcoat, which could have concealed a bomb. The Met's 'Gold Command' had instructed officers that he was to be stopped from entering the tube system. But this apparently didn't happen.

'When in doubt shoot to kill' does not strike Londonist as the best attitude for our police to be taking and yet it's also reported that a police officer was relieving himself instead of filming the operation, so officers could not tell if they had tracked down one of the alleged bombers. This led to the advice "it would be worth someone else having a look". Unfortunately the next person close enough to do just that was the man who killed him.

We'd also like to know where exactly the story about the barrier vaulting, the fleeing and the heavy coat originated because one question that another Londonist tonight asked must also be worrying more than a few Londoners: Why do the police lie so much?

Last Updated 16 August 2005