The Crown Prosecution Service has today, Wednesday 14 June, announced its decision that a serving firearms officer, known as W80, will not face criminal charges in connection with the death of Jermaine Baker.
The decision not to charge follows an independent investigation by the Independent Police Complaints Commission after Mr Baker was fatally shot during a police operation in December 2015.
The IPCC has provided its report to the MPS. The Met’s Directorate of Professional Standards is considering the IPCC’s views around potential misconduct, if any, and will formally respond in due course.
W80, their family and the officer’s colleagues continue to receive every possible support from the MPS.
Deputy Assistant Commissioner Peter Terry said: “Our thoughts continue to be with Mr Baker’s family at this difficult time. It is completely natural that they want answers as to how he lost his life.
“We continue to provide the firearms officer, his family and all his colleagues who were deployed on the operation that day with every possible support.
“As police officers, we are all fully aware that we will be asked to account for our actions. We are not exempt from the law and would not wish to be.
“The only thing our officers ask, and frankly deserve, is that they are treated fairly.
“Investigations such as this should be and must continue to be investigated independently. They must also be timely and effective.
“Firearms officers are highly trained, highly skilled and very experienced. On that day they were doing exactly what we, the MPS, ask of them which was to protect the public of London from armed and dangerous criminals.
“The officers were deployed to stop a plot to break out of a prison van a man who had pleaded guilty to being armed and who was on his way with another to shoot someone. An imitation firearm was recovered from a holdall in the rear footwell behind the driver’s seat of the car used by the suspects.
“Those who took part in that plot, who were with Mr Baker that morning, were sentenced to more than 30 years in prison in June 2016.
“With the events of 3 June and 22 March so fresh in the public’s mind it is clear why now, more than ever before, our armed officers provide an invaluable service in keeping Londoners and their own unarmed colleagues safe. We rely upon on them to provide this, quite frankly unique, policing role.
“We all rely on them to take decisive action, without hesitation, in the face of the enduring threat from terrorism. This role requires them to face and quickly assess threats beyond the obvious such as the overt possession of a gun or knife, but those threats that could result in an immediate significant loss of life.
“Every day in London our armed officers willingly respond to dangerous situations as we ask and expect them to deal with some of the most high risk situations there are in policing.
“This requires those armed officers having the confidence to make the most difficult of decisions, often in split seconds, based on extensive training and skill.
“We will continue to give our armed officers every support and reassurance to ensure they have the confidence to keep fulfilling this crucial role at this difficult time.
“It falls upon the senior leaders of policing to ensure when we call upon our firearms officers to use force they can do so with the confidence of the public and the knowledge that the system to hold them to account will treat them fairly.”