Police Officer Shot Dead In Training Exercise
Evidence from an inquest into the death of a policeman shot dead by a colleague in a training exercise which went tragically wrong will be reviewed by the Crown Prosecution Service.
Pc Ian Terry was unlawfully killed in the incident, a jury at Manchester Coroner's Court ruled, finding that errors made by the officer who pulled the trigger were accompanied by mistakes made by Greater Manchester Police's firearms unit in planning, training and safety measures.
During the exercise 32-year-old Pc Terry, from Burnley, had an unloaded handgun as he played the role of a criminal fleeing in a car. His close friend shot and killed the father of two on June 9 2008 as the unit practised in a disused factory.
On seeing him holding the gun, the officer - granted anonymity and identified only as Chris - told the jury he acted "instinctively" and pulled the trigger on his Remington 870 pump action 12-bore shotgun.
Pc Terry, who was not wearing body armour, was hit from a distance of about 12 inches by a blank round of a specialist ammunition called Round Irritant Personnel (RIP), designed to burst tyres but deadly at close range.
The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) ruled earlier there was "insufficient evidence" to bring criminal charges against either the police force or the still-serving officer Chris. In the light of the jury's verdict, a CPS spokeswoman said it "will consider whether any significant new evidence arose from the inquest and if so, we will re-review the case".
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David Urpeth, a work accident lawyer from law firm Irwin Mitchell said: “This was a tragic fatal accident at work.
“Whilst recognising officers need to have realistic training, such training needs to be provided with officer safety being paramount.
“Sadly, in this case something went tragically wrong.
“The serious verdict on unlawful killing following this work accident has prompted the CPS to reconsider the evidence."