Man 'carrying two knives' shot dead by police in Westminster

9 March 2020, 05:20

Uniformed officers guard the scene in Westminster
Uniformed officers guard the scene in Westminster. Picture: PA
EJ Ward

By EJ Ward

Armed police have shot a man dead in Westminster after he pulled out two knives when officers challenged him

Scotland Yard said officers were patrolling the area about 11.30pm on Sunday when they noticed the man acting suspiciously.

When challenged by police, the man produced two knives.

Armed police officers responded and used a Taser and police firearm.

London Ambulance Service attended but the man was pronounced dead at the scene at Great Scotland Yard a short time later.

No police officers or members of the public were injured during the incident and a Met spokesperson said the incident was not being treated as terror-related.

Uniformed officers manned cordons at Scotland Place, leading to Great Scotland Yard, and on parts of Northumberland Avenue and Whitehall nearest to Trafalgar Square.

Watchdog the Independent Office for Police Conduct is investigating, as is standard for any police shooting.

Fatal police shootings in the UK are rare and recent incidents have mainly been part of responses to terror attacks.

In the year to March 2019, there were 20,186 police firearms operations in England and Wales, around a quarter of which were carried out by the Met.

There were 13 incidents nationally in which officers actually fired their guns.

The most recent fatal shooting involving a Met officer and not linked to counter-terrorism was in April 2018, when Richard Cottier, 41, who was seen with a gun, was killed in Collier Row, east London.