20 September 2023

Police officer charged with murder of Chris Kaba

20 September 2023

The Metropolitan Police officer who fatally shot Chris Kaba has been charged with murder, the Crown Prosecution Service said.

Mr Kaba, 24, died when he was shot through the windscreen of the Audi he was driving in Streatham Hill, south London, on September 6 last year.

The officer, who has only been identified as NX121, is due to appear at Westminster Magistrates’ Court on Thursday.

Rosemary Ainslie, from the CPS, said: “Following a thorough review of the evidence provided by the IOPC (Independent Office for Police Conduct), the CPS has authorised a charge of murder against a Metropolitan Police officer following the death of Chris Kaba.

“Mr Kaba died on September 6 2022 after he was struck by a single bullet in Streatham Hill, south London.

“The CPS reminds all concerned that criminal proceedings against the officer are active and that he has the right to a fair trial.

“It is extremely important there should be no reporting, commentary or sharing of information online which could in any way prejudice these proceedings.”

Mr Kaba’s family welcomed the charging decision and said they hope any trial can take place “without delay”.

Metropolitan Police Deputy Assistant Commissioner Helen Millichap said: “We have fully supported the IOPC investigation as it has worked to establish the facts.

“Today’s announcement is a significant and serious development. We must now allow the court process to run its course so it would not be appropriate for me to say more at this stage.

“Our thoughts are with everyone affected by this case.”

The CPS and IOPC have not publicly named the officer, as would be usual when an adult is charged with murder, because it is understood the officer intends to make an application for anonymity at court.

Mr Kaba was being followed by an unmarked police car with no lights or sirens on the day he died, while he was driving an Audi that did not belong to him.

He drove into Kirkstall Gardens, a narrow residential street, which was blocked by a marked patrol car, and the marksman fired once through the windscreen, hitting him in the head.

The Metropolitan Police Federation, which represents officers in the force from the rank of constable to chief inspector, said: “Being a firearms officer in London is one of the world’s toughest jobs. Officers, who volunteer for the role, know the responsibility and accountability that come with it.

“The Metropolitan Police Federation notes today’s statement from the Crown Prosecution Service in relation to one of our firearms colleagues and make no further comment on that at this time.

“What we will say is that this decision will leave serving Metropolitan Police colleagues concerned as they go about their incredibly difficult and dangerous work.

“The officer in question retains our full support as we now go through the legal process.”

It is rare for police officers to be charged with murder or manslaughter.

According to the charity Inquest, since 1990 there have been 1,869 deaths in or following police custody in England and Wales.

Of those, there have been 12 cases where an officer has been charged with murder or manslaughter.

There has only been one conviction of a police officer in that time – West Mercia Police Constable Benjamin Monk, who was jailed in 2021 for the manslaughter of former footballer Dalian Atkinson.

Mr Atkinson was tasered to the ground and kicked in the head in 2016.

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