Mark Duggan lawyer: 'people want to know the truth about a situation'

The scene of the Mark Duggan shooting

The scene of the Mark Duggan shooting

First published in News
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Haringey Independent: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter

Lawyers have called for greater transparency in inquests like that into the death of Mark Duggan.

In the final session of the judicial review at the Royal Courts of Justice this afternoon, Michael Mansfield, QC for the Duggan family, called for a legal framework to be drawn up to help coroners guide juries in future.

He said: “The public then know what’s being decided and the basis on which it’s being decided.”

The framework could take the form of a series of simple questions, he said, pointing out that in the case of Mark Duggan, the jury could have been asked to consider the armed officer’s “state of mind” at the time of the shooting.

Mr Mansfield said that it was not only the use of force that needed to be considered, but its "proportionality", and that the task was to think of "ways in which confusion may be limited" in future cases.

He added: "People want to know the truth about a situation."

Samantha Leek QC, representing the National Crime Agency, said that part of the confusion surrounding the verdict was down to journalists.

She said: “If the press are asking ‘how can the police shoot an unarmed man?’ – well that, in fact, is lawful, but if the press are reporting it as such then there’s nothing the court can do about it.”

Lord Leveson replied that the court could not affect the way the press reported on court proceedings.

Closing the review, Lord Leveson thanked the counsel and said that the judges would now retire to reflect on what they had heard.

He said: “Mr Duggan’s death is of course a tragedy for his family”.

Mr Duggan was shot in August 2011 after armed officers forced the car he was travelling in to stop, based on intelligence that he had collected a gun

Firearms officers claimed they fired in self-defence after Mr Duggan pointed a gun at them.

The gun was found ten to 20ft away and the jury decided, on a balance of probabilities, that Mr Duggan threw it away from him as police forced his car to stop.

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