Po­lice ‘gave no warn­ing be­fore shoot­ing dead de Menezes’

Daily Express - - NEWS - By John Twomey

TWO Scot­land Yard marks­men shot Jean Charles de Menezes to death on a crowded Tube train without any warn­ing, an in­quest heard yes­ter­day.

The of­fi­cers have in­sisted they yelled “armed po­lice” mo­ments be­fore they killed the Brazil­ian in mis­take for a sui­cide bomber.

But they were con­tra­dicted yes­ter­day by three pas­sen­gers who were within feet of Mr de Menezes when he was shot.

Rachel Wil­son, who was so close she was cov­ered in the young man’s blood, mis­took the plain clothes marks­men for ter­ror­ists. She told the in­quest: “It was only when I left the car­riage and some­body moved me gen­tly out of the way that I fig­ured they must be good guys.”

Asked if she heard shouts of “armed po­lice”, Ms Wil­son replied: “If I had heard that, I would have thought they were po­lice, so no.”

Ms Wil­son was on the North­ern Line train at Stock­well, South Lon­don, with her boyfriend Ralph Livock. Mr Livock and fel­low passenger Wes­ley Mer­rill also said they heard no warn­ings.

Mr de Menezes, 27, was shot seven times on July 22 2005, the day af­ter would-be sui­cide bombers failed to re­peat the car­nage of the July 7 at­tacks on Lon­don’s pub­lic trans­port sys­tem.

He was tailed to Stock­well Un­der­ground sta­tion from his home in a block of flats in Tulse Hill, South Lon­don. The young Brazil­ian was mis­taken for failed July 21 bomber Hus­sain Os­man, who was be­lieved to be hid­ing in a flat in the same block.

Ms Wil­son, who was sit­ting op­po­site Mr de Menezes, told the jury she had no idea the ca­su­ally-dressed men with guns were po­lice of­fi­cers.

She said: “First, I thought they were mess­ing around. Then I thought they were ter­ror­ists.” She was pressed on whether she heard any­one say any­thing be­fore the shoot­ing. Ms Wil­son was adamant she did not and added: “That’s one of the things I re­call the most – the si­lence.”

Mr Livock said his first im­pres­sion was that the men with guns were “a group of lads just hav­ing a laugh”.

He told the jury: “A very bad taste laugh but just hav­ing a game on the Tube be­cause they were dressed in jeans and T-shirts but with firearms. The thing that made me re­alise it wasn’t a group of lads play­ing around was when the first shot was fired.”

As he and Ms Wil­son sat on the train, he heard some­one out­side the car­riage shout­ing some­thing like: “He’s here.”

Sec­onds later, a man bran­dish­ing a pis­tol got on the train and lev­elled it at the Brazil­ian.

Mr Livock told the jury: “Mr de Menezes as if he was ex­pect­ing some­body to say some­thing but he didn’t look fright­ened. He looked as if he was wait­ing for some­body to tell him what was go­ing on.”

Af­ter the shoot­ing Ms Wil­son and Mr Livock fled by Tube to nearby Pim­lico, where a re­luc­tant sta­tion em­ployee agreed to alert po­lice only when he saw blood on Ms Wil­son’s hands. He failed to get through.

Joined by six fel­low pas­sen­gers, the cou­ple went to a nearby pub where the land­lord phoned po­lice. It took an hour for of­fi­cers to ar­rive and take state­ments.

Mr Mer­rill re­called that a man came on to the train, pointed at Mr de Menezes and said some­thing like: “That’s the guy.” The passenger told the hear­ing: “He looked like an un­der­cover po­lice of­fi­cer.”

Ear­lier in the hear­ing the two marks­men who killed Mr de Menezes – known only as C2 and C12 – in­sisted they both shouted warn­ings. The hear­ing con­tin­ues.

RED ALERT: Po­lice ve­hi­cles out­side Stock­well Tube sta­tion af­ter the shoot­ing

GUNNED DOWN: Mr de Menezes ‘did not look fright­ened’

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