The killing of Mark Duggan by police officers has been ruled as a lawful killing by the jury at the inquest into the death of the 29-year-old. They reached their conclusion today.
The judge in the case earlier told the jury that a majority verdict was allowed in this inquest and eight out of the 10 jurors agreed to the lawful killing verdict. The inquest into Duggan’s death has been taking place at the Royal Courts of Justice since 16 September 2013.
The family of Mark Duggan shouted abuse at the jury when the verdict was delivered, with the police being called “murderers.”
The jury delivered their verdicts on a number of factors in the case; deciding that the police did not do the best they could with the intelligence they had that Mark Duggan had met Kevin Hutchinson to collect a gun.
They also ruled that Mark was armed and the gun ended up 20 feet away from his body because he threw it. Eight out of the 10 jurors also agreed that he did not have the firearm in his hand when he was shot by the marksman.
Even though it was agreed that Mark was not holding the gun when he was shot, the jury decided that the marksman’s strong belief that his own life was endangered justified the shooting.
Mark Duggan was shot and killed on 4 August 2011, after he was followed by police officers who believed that the 29-year-old north Londoner – who was a member of gang Tottenham Man Dem – was about to collect a gun and carry out an attack in connection to the killing of his cousin Kelvin Easton in March that year.
When he was stopped, it was reported that he looked as though he was about to open fire on police and posed a threat to them. This lead to officers reacting and delivering a fatal shot to the chest.
A gun was later found 20 feet away from Mark’s body, the same gun which was supplied to him by Kevin Hutchinson 15 minutes before he was stopped by officers.
These facts lead to questions as to how the weapon ended up at such a distance from his body, supporting the witness claims that the police lied and planted the gun; claims which were strongly denied by the police during the inquest.
His death sparked protests and riots in Tottenham, north London where Mark Duggan lived. It then spread to other areas throughout the UK in August 2011.