London Police Chief: Armed Cops To Wear Video Cameras


Credit: Arpingstone/wikimedia

Yesterday, a jury in the U.K. ruled that Mark Duggan, a 29-year-old man who was shot and killed in London by armed police officers in 2011, was killed lawfully. Duggan was shot after fleeing a taxi he was in which was stopped by police. Although Duggan did not have a gun when he was shot, the BBC reports that the jury "said it was more likely than not that Mr Duggan had thrown a gun from the vehicle just before he was killed. The weapon was found about 20ft (6m) away from the scene."

Duggan's killing prompted deadly riots across London and other parts of England.

Today, Sir Bernard Hogan-Howe, the head of London's Metropolitan Police Service (which polices all of the Greater London area except the City of London) said that armed officers will wear cameras.

Perhaps the most notable incident of London's police using firearms since Duggan's shooting was during the response to Lee Rigby's murder, when armed police shot and wounded Michael Adebolajo and Michael Adebowale, who had killed the soldier. Last month, Adebolajo and Adebowale were found guilty of murdering Rigby.

Video of that shooting below (from 1:24).

It's good news that armed police that work in most of London will be wearing cameras. Unfortunately, as former Reason intern Jess Remington noted in October last year, not very many police departments in the U.S. (where police officers are armed) have cameras on uniforms.

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  1. OT

    Study finds no link between secondhand tobacco smoke and lung cancer

    This is a few weeks old, don’t know if Reason did an article or not. I was fighting the “ban ecigs crowd” at CNN a couple days ago and one of the commenters pointed out this study. People making millions via lawsuits based on crap science and hearsay.

    I hypothesised this to be the case 20 years ago when the ban smoking crowd started using secondhand smoke to push their agenda. Take the number of people who get cancer from smoking by inhaling this shit directly into their lungs. Then dilute it into THOUSANDS of cubic feet of air. Not very fucking likely. I suspect they’ll find similar results with the emphysema and heart disease studies.

    1. But, but, but there’s a consensus!

    2. A mailto: link sure takes me back to the early days of the Web.

      1. Is that why I can’t copypasta out of it?

          1. Still no copypasta, but thx.

  2. . Although Duggan did not have a gun when he was shot, the BBC reports that the jury “said it was more likely than not that Mr Duggan had thrown a gun from the vehicle just before he was killed.

    So, is that jury saying that simply having possessed a gun while under pursuit is justification for being killed? ‘Cause the way I see it, the man was unarmed – had disarmed himself (granted – for the purpose of getting rid of evidence and not out civic virtue) so the cops would have *less* reason than normal to kill him.

    1. Funny, when I sat in on a trial, a distance of five feet from the prone suspects hand over a tile floor to where the firearm was located constituted reasonable doubt and a discarded weapons charge. 20ft and I’d have said “got anything that puts that gun in his hand pointed at the cops?”

  3. I thought Bobbies weren’t armed. What does a Bobby need to do to get a piece?

    1. Firearms Unit

      A police officer cannot apply to join the firearms unit without first finishing their two year probationary period, with a further two years in a core policing role.[2]

      Only three forces in the United Kingdom routinely arm officers due to the nature of their work; the Ministry of Defence Police who are responsible law enforcement on MOD property, the Civil Nuclear Constabulary who guard civil nuclear facilities, and the Police Service of Northern Ireland.[5][6][7]

      1. Its funny – despite the stringent regulations on how long you need to serve and the training required to even be considered for the firearms unit, their armed cops still tend to be as trigger-happy as ours.

        1. So maybe there is something to this ‘not having armed cops all over the place’ thing – if they’re not armed they can’t ‘accidentally’ shoot someone.

        2. What’s the point of seeking out a position of power where you can kill without consequence, and then not killing anyone? I honestly believe most cops wake up every day hoping that today is the day they get to kill someone.

  4. Cop: “Put down your weapon!”

    Suspect puts down weapon.


    Judge: “This shooting must be lawful. The cops found a gun 20 feet away.”

    1. In the UK it’s a jury that makes these kinds of findings, not a judge.

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