Saturday, November 01, 2008

Witnesses say police gave De Menezes no warning

A couple sitting opposite Jean Charles de Menezes did not hear undercover police identify themselves before they shot the Brazilian, his inquest was told yesterday.

Ralph Livock and Rachel Wilson saw armed men board the train at Stockwell Tube station in South London and move towards Mr de Menezes, their weapons raised.

At no time, they said, did they hear anyone shout “armed police”.

This contradicts accounts from some armed officers that they had identified themselves.

The couple were reading when officers in plain clothes boarded the train.

Asked if any had identified themselves, Mr Livock said: “Absolutely not. On television you see people with police caps or jackets. There was nothing like that.

“One of my thoughts was that they were lads having a laugh, because they were in jeans and T-shirts. We had no idea whether they were police, whether they were terrorists, whether they were somebody else. The thing that had me realise it was not lads playing around was when the first shot was fired. The man in front fired into Mr de Menezes’s head.”

Ms Wilson said: “I thought they were messing around and then I thought they were terrorists and it was only when I left the carriage that I realised they were good guys.”

Asked at what point she had realised that, she told Southwark Coroner’s Court: “When I looked down and there was blood on my hands.”

Mr Livock said: “Mr de Menezes didn’t look frightened – he looked like he was waiting for somebody to tell him what was going on.”

Contrary to what the officers told the court, Mr Livock said that he did not see the 27-year-old electrician get up and walk towards the officers. “My recollection is that I didn’t see him doing anything other than sitting,” he said.

As he got off the train he heard more shooting. He saw Mr de Menezes slumped in his seat and there was a lot of blood.

Mr de Menezes was shot seven times in the head at point-blank range by undercover police.

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Blogger Dan said...

It's absolutely amazing the powers your society has granted to an obviously irresponsible ruling class and their police force! If a group of unidentified assailants shot someone in the head in front of me here in the States, I would immediately respond with my own, legally owned and carried firearm. Of course your British cops don't have to worry about being mistaken for terrorists or gang members, as they have completely disarmed and neutered your society. I guess it makes their job "easier" but aren't they supposed to be serving and protecting you, not themselves?

It's really sad to see Britain fast on its way to becoming one of the great dictatorships of the world.

Tue May 05, 07:10:00 pm GMT  

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