Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

'SICK POLICE GAME' AT SIEGE INQUEST; FIREARMS OFFICER WHO SHOT BARRISTER 'USED SONG TITLES IN EVIDENCE'; Met Chief's Outrage at 'Inquest Game'

Newspaper article The Evening Standard (London, England)

'SICK POLICE GAME' AT SIEGE INQUEST; FIREARMS OFFICER WHO SHOT BARRISTER 'USED SONG TITLES IN EVIDENCE'; Met Chief's Outrage at 'Inquest Game'

Article excerpt

Byline: Justin Davenport Crime Editor and Kiran Randhawa

A POLICEMAN inserted song titles ranging from Alice Cooper to Chris de Burgh in his evidence at the inquest of a barrister shot dead during a gun siege, it was claimed today.

The officer, codenamed AZ8, is alleged to have played the game as he gave his account under oath of the death of Mark Saunders who was killed by Met marksmen in his Chelsea townhouse on 6 May 2008.

Mr Saunders's mother Rosemary said this afternoon: "If it's all such a game, was it a game on May 6? If this man can approach the inquest with such an attitude, then it makes you wonder about how he approaches shooting his gun to kill a man."

AZ8 was one of seven CO19 marksmen who opened fire. A bullet from his carbine was one of the fatal shots.

An inquest last month found Mr Saunders was lawfully killed but there was criticism of the way senior officers handled the stand-off in which the lawyer, an alcoholic who had been drinking heavily, fired a shotgun from his window.

Today the Independent Police Complaints Commission announced it was investigating the claims. Commissioner Sir Paul Stephenson was said to be "outraged and ashamed" when he heard of the officer's alleged actions.

A source said: "He could not believe someone could be so insensitive, it was terrible judgment. These are people who are making judgments about major issues on the streets."

Officer AZ8 was reprimanded following an internal Met probe but denied using song titles. But a Standard review of his evidence shows a number of possible songs.

They include: Point Of No Return -- Phantom of the Opera; Enough's Enough -- Alice Cooper; Self Preservation -- Italian Job; Blinding Light -- August Burns Red; F**k My Old Boots -- The Membranes; Quiet Moments -- Chris de Burgh; I'm Kicking Myself -- As Tall As Lions; Any Other Way --Backstreet Boys; People Talking -- Jay-Z; Line of Fire -- Journey. …

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