Barrister shot by police - lawful killing or not?

#1
An inquest is to open today into the death of a wealthy central London barrister shot dead by police during an armed siege. Mark Saunders, 32, was killed by at least five bullets fired by marksmen who surrounded his London home. They were called after reports a shotgun had been fired out of a window at the £2.2 million property.

Mr Saunders was killed in a volley of shots fired by seven officers at the end of a five-hour stand-off at 9.32pm on May 6 2008. The fatal gunfire came after a first shot was fired by police at 5.04pm, and a second shot was fired at 9.09pm as Mr Saunders roamed the property with a shotgun. The SEVEN officers who fired 11 bullets at Mr Saunders all claimed that they acted in self-defence or in the defence of colleagues.

Saunders was shot by officers from the Met's CO19 unit AND Royal and Diplomatic Protection Squad.

Slight overkill here maybe?
(Disgraced) Commander Ali Dizaei, in overall charge, refused to let Saunder's wife speak to him.
How many marksmen does it take to shoot one bloke armed with a side by side shot gun?
What the hell were the SRR doing there?
 
#2
An inquest is to open today into the death of a wealthy central London barrister shot dead by police during an armed siege. Mark Saunders, 32, was killed by at least five bullets fired by marksmen who surrounded his London home. They were called after reports a shotgun had been fired out of a window at the £2.2 million property.

Mr Saunders was killed in a volley of shots fired by seven officers at the end of a five-hour stand-off at 9.32pm on May 6 2008. The fatal gunfire came after a first shot was fired by police at 5.04pm, and a second shot was fired at 9.09pm as Mr Saunders roamed the property with a shotgun. The SEVEN officers who fired 11 bullets at Mr Saunders all claimed that they acted in self-defence or in the defence of colleagues.

Saunders was shot by officers from the Met's CO19 unit AND Royal and Diplomatic Protection Squad.

Slight overkill here maybe?
(Disgraced) Commander Ali Dizaei, in overall charge, refused to let Saunder's wife speak to him.
How many marksmen does it take to shoot one bloke armed with a side by side shot gun?
What the hell were the SRR doing there?
On the above points you've made, it sounds like complete overkill. Then again, he was middle class...

edit: meaning to say it doesn't surprise me that they went OTT.
 
#3
Coroner Dr Paul Knapman has granted anonymity to officers giving evidence as:

"The majority of these officers have expressed fears about possible retribution from violent criminals with whom they have been involved in the past, although no specific threats have been identified."

The bloke was a divorce lawyer - not an underworld brief.
 
#4
He was a lawyer, they never shot him enough.
 
#5
He was ex HAC and a prolific turps-nudger. Now he's just ex.
 
#6
Here was me thinking that, for lawyers, only a stake through the heart was truly effective!

"was killed by at least five bullets fired by marksmen" + "The SEVEN officers who fired 11 bullets".

So, maybe less than half the bullets fired hit the target. Methinks a little more shooting range practice time needs to be scheduled.
 
#7
He was firing a weapon in public. Got slotted. Job done.

The real question is why it took 11 rounds of which only five got there target?

Edited to add someone beat me to it.
 

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#9
To be fair, they are getting better. At least this bloke actually had a weapon. Quite a step up from be-denimed sparky, ambling with intent and being is unlawful possession of a table leg.
 
#10
He was firing a weapon in public. Got slotted. Job done.

The real question is why it took 11 rounds of which only five got there target?

Edited to add someone beat me to it.


Pretty good shooting by plod standards.

At least no barn doors were harmed.
 
#11
There was a similar incident in Switzerland a couple of weeks ago. Though the fellow was twice the age and was to be evicted from his property. He refused and eventually the police surrounded the building. He came out guns blazing and shot an officer in the head (in the Kevlar helmet to be precise), officer survived and the guy got away. A manhunt that was to last for 10 days ensued. He was eventually apprehended without another shot being fired.

My point is that in a country with one of the highest gun ownerships per capita (2-3 Mio firearms on 7.8 Mio population) I found it astounding that when asked whether officers are to take a kill shot when presented with the opportunity, this was denied by the authorities as the law does not foresee that except for self-defence. There were similar cases in Switzerland in the past, yet, they have not adopted a more aggressive stance on threat response, though gun control has become stricter.

Looking at the UK case I can't help but think that people shit themselves if there is a gun involved and tend to go overboard...

Pic from the Swiss police attached (not bad, Sig 551 Swat and MP5SD3)...
 

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#13
He was firing a weapon in public. Got slotted. Job done.

The real question is why it took 11 rounds of which only five got there target?

Edited to add someone beat me to it.

It sounds like a bit of shooting competition was going on - CO19 verses Royal and Diplomatic Protection Squad whilst
Showing off to the SRR boys.
 
#14
To be fair, they are getting better. At least this bloke actually had a weapon. Quite a step up from be-denimed sparky, ambling with intent and being is unlawful possession of a table leg.
As this isn't the NAAFI, and to be fair to the filth, the bloke had previous, and he was reported to be carrying a shotgun in a plastic bag shortly after waving his bag around in a pub, claiming it contained a shotgun.

Pretty good shooting by plod standards.

At least no barn doors were harmed.
Again, out of fairness, CO19 pretty much swept the board at the army-run international snipers competition a couple of years back, failing to win only one category.
 
#15
Regarding the Swiss. Do not their reservists hold a weapon and several rounds of ammunition at home, in the interests of national defence? If this is still the case, it is amazing that there is so little gun crime there.
 
#16
#17
As this isn't the NAAFI, and to be fair to the filth, the bloke had previous, and he was reported to be carrying a shotgun in a plastic bag shortly after waving his bag around in a pub, claiming it contained a shotgun.


Again, out of fairness, CO19 pretty much swept the board at the army-run international snipers competition a couple of years back, failing to win only one category.
I'm sure that police marksman are bloody good and I don't envy the fact they get a split second to pull the trigger and them get nit picked to death by people with the benefit of hindsight. It's still shoddy to pump 11 rounds at someone in an urban environment and miss more than half.
 
#18
Regarding the Swiss. Do not their reservists hold a weapon and several rounds of ammunition at home, in the interests of national defence? If this is still the case, it is amazing that there is so little gun crime there.
Well, everything is kind of fluid right now. This used to be the case. A Sig 550 (see attached, an amazing precision rifle that would pass for a sniper rifle too) and 50 rounds of GP90 (a modified 5.56) or a SIG 220 9mm for ruperts and most non-combat troops. What has changed now is that you no longer NEED to keep it at home; you can bring to the arsenal for safe keeping between services. However, they (mind you the people, not the MP's) will decide on further tightening of guns laws (essentially outright ban of pump action, higher regulation of full auto and the stating of a purpose when applying for a license). However, for now you can still buy anything the heart desires as long as it’s not full auto (special collectors permit required), everything else goes. Laser pointers and silencers have been banned but are still available to special permit holders.

Re crime: Yes, there is little gun violence, mostly suicides and the odd family drama, which is bad as well. Having a militia system means everyone has access to guns and is quite comfortable with them. You sometimes see guys in civvies, assault rifles slung on the back, off to do shoot their annual mandatory exercise...
Schützenfest - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
 

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#19
I'm sure that police marksman are bloody good and I don't envy the fact they get a split second to pull the trigger and them get nit picked to death by people with the benefit of hindsight. It's still shoddy to pump 11 rounds at someone in an urban environment and miss more than half.
Some of the first rounds were fired although the 'marksman' had no clear target. This was one of the diplomatics who turned up at the start of the the event.
 
#20
Commander Ali Dizaei, in overall charge, ...
Did Dizaei owe him money? Perhaps the barrister and part time Fig. 11 target had represented Comical Ali in one of his many discrimination claims and had had the racist cheek to demand payment for his services.

Other than that, sounds like the police were perfectly reasonable. I was always told that merely sighting somebody with a firearm was legal justification for killing them. If this bloke was firing a shotgun in the middle of London, what else were the police to do?
 

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