Jean Charles inquest update


Menezes man overcome by emotion
24th October 2008

One of the police marksmen who shot Jean Charles de Menezes has broken down while giving evidence as he offered his condolences to the Brazilian’s family. Shooting an innocent man was something he would have “to live with for the rest of my life”, he told an inquest.

But he said he had had “no alternative” other than to protect the public. Mr de Menezes, 27, was killed on 22 July 2005 in Stockwell, south London, after police mistook him for failed suicide bomber Hussain Osman.

The Brazilian’s mother, Maria Otone de Menezes, 63, and brother, Giovani da Silva, 36, heard the unnamed officer give evidence at the Oval cricket ground. He said: “I can’t begin to put myself in the position that they are faced with. “I am a family man myself and to lose a son or any member of your family in this situation – I just couldn’t believe it. “And I offer my sincere condolences, I really, really respectfully do that.”

Commenting after the hearing, Mr de Menezes’s mother said it had been difficult to listen to the officer’s evidence, but she wanted to hear the truth of how her son died.

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