Croydon police officer shot: LIVE updates after officer killed by man 'known to terror cops' inside station – LATEST
A POLICE officer was shot dead inside a Croydon police station early this morning with the suspect's weapon was missed during a search.
The Custody Sergeant was gunned down by a suspect who was reportedly known to terror cops and had been arrested for carrying ammunition just minutes earlier.
The handcuffed man managed to pull a gun from his trousers and shoot the veteran cop dead before turning the gun on himself, causing critical but as yet non-fatal injuries.
Follow our Croydon shooting live blog for the latest news and updates...
OFFICER 'MONTHS FROM RETIREMENT'
The officer killed in this morning's shooting is reported to have been with the force for almost 30 years and just months from retirement.
The man's name has not yet been released, but he was reportedly a custody sergeant.
Commissioner Cressida Dick has described him as a “long-serving sergeant” and “much-loved colleague”.
SUSPECT 'KNOWN TO TERROR POLICE'
The suspect in this morning's shooting was reportedly known to terror police.
The 23-year-old remains in a critical condition in hospital after shooting himself following the incident.
The BBC reports that the man was already known to counter-terrorism police, although the claim has not been confirmed by the Met.
'YOU CAN'T GET INTO THAT STATION WITH A BAG OF WEED'
Both former police officers and offenders have expressed surprise that the suspect in last night's shooting was able to enter the police station with a gun.
Speaking to Sun Online, one man known as MusicBox MB, 33, from Croydon, said: “I’ve been in there a few times.
“Before they take you into the station they search you outside and the van you come in.
“There is no way you can get into that station with a gun, you can't get in there with a tiny bag of weed.
“100 per cent they won't have searched him properly. That's why this happened.”
MAYOR 'DEVASTATED' BY KILLING
Mayor of London Sadiq Khan has said he was devastated to hear of this morning's shooting.
A statement released on twitter read: “Devastated by this news. My heart goes out to the family of this brave officer, who has paid the ultimate price for helping to keep Londoners safe.
“Tragic incidents like this are terrible reminders of the dangers our police officers face every single day.
“My thoughts are also with the entire Metropolitan Police family, who I know will be deeply mourning their colleague at this extremely difficult time.
“I remain in close contact with the Commissioner to offer her and our Met officers and staff my support.”
OFFICER SHOT WAS 'LONG SERVING SERGEANT'
The police officer who was shot dead this morning was a “long-serving sergeant”, Cressida Dick said.
The Met Commissioner said: “This morning we learnt of the shocking death of a much-loved colleague, a long-serving sergeant in the Metropolitan Police who was working last night in our Croydon custody suite.
“I have visited and spoken to our officer's partner together with other colleagues. We are giving her the best support we can.”
MET COMMISSIONER PAYS TRIBUTE
Cressida Dick has said the police force is a “family” as she paid tribute to the officer killed in this morning's shooting.
The Met Commissioner said: “The Met is a family. Policing is a family in London and across the United Kingdom.
“Today, we police are all mourning a great loss. I would like to thank our officers and the staff, together with colleagues from the London Ambulance Service, the London air ambulance and all our medical and hospital colleagues who I know did everything they could to save his life.
“A murder investigation is under way and officers are working at several crime scenes to secure evidence and to establish the facts of what happened. We are working closely with the Independent Office for Police Conduct.”
SERGEANT 'WAS TAKING SUSPECTS TEMPERATURE FOR COVID CHECKS'
The sergeant shot dead in Croydon this morning was reportedly taking the suspect's temperature as part of coronavirus checks at the time.
The 23-year-old man was in handcuffs but is said to have managed to pull a gun from his trousers before shooting the officer in the chest.
'REMINDER OF THE DANGERS POLICE FACE', SAYS PATEL
Last night's shooting serves as a reminder of the dangers police officers face in their jobs every day, Home Secretary Priti Patel has said.
In a statement, Patel said: “I am deeply shocked and saddened to learn that a Metropolitan Police Officer has been shot and killed in the line of duty.
“My thoughts today are with his family, friends and policing colleagues in London and across the country.
“This morning I spoke to Metropolitan Police Commissioner Cressida Dick to express my condolences and to offer whatever support is needed as this tragic event is investigated.
“This is a sad day for our country and another terrible reminder of how our police officers put themselves in danger each and every day to keep the rest of us safe.”
'ONE OF THE BEST'
A colleague of the officer killed in this morning's Croydon shooting has said he was “one of the best”.
Writing on twitter, Met officer Stuart James said he was among the officers sent to the scene following the incident.
“This morning my team and I responded to the worst possible radio transmission from custody, words and scenes I shall never forget,” he wrote.
“The unimaginable happened to our police family. We have lost not only a good skipper but also a real gentleman.
“One of the best. RIP brother.”
MURDER INVESTIGATION LAUNCHED
The Metropolitan Police has confirmed that a murder investigation has begun after last night's shooting in Croydon.
“A murder investigation has been launched following the death of a police officer in south London,” a statement read.
“We are in the process of informing all of the officer’s family and are supporting them with specialist officers.
“A 23-year-old man was detained by officers at the scene.
“He was also taken to hospital with a gunshot wound and remains in a critical condition.”
PRIME MINISTER PAYS TRIBUTE
Prime minister Boris Johnson has paid tribute to the police officer killed in a shooting in the early hours of this morning.
“My deepest condolences go to the family, friends and colleagues of the police officer who was killed in Croydon last night,” he said.
“We owe a huge debt to those who risk their own lives to keep us safe.”
'HONOURABLE AND DEDICATED'
Croydon Metropolitan Police service has paid tribute to the “honourable and dedicated” officer killed in this morning's shooting.
A post from the force's official twitter account read: “Today we lost an honorable, brave and dedicated family member.
“Our hearts are with the officers immediate family at this time following this devastating loss.”
SUSPECT WAS ARRESTED FOR POSSESSION OF AMMUNITION, SAY REPORTS
The suspect in this morning's shooting had reportedly been arrested for possession of ammunition.
The 23-year-old was searched after being seen acting suspiciously in Croydon town centre.
It is not yet clear how the gun was missed during the search.
'TRAGEDY FOR ENTIRE NATION'
The shooting dead of a police officer in Croydon this morning is a 'tragedy for the entire nation', justice minister Kit Malthouse has told the House of Commons.
Addressing MPs ahead of a debate this morning, Malthouse said: “The Home Secretary has spoken to the commissioner of the Metropolitan Police and offered the help and support of the Home Office.
“We ask our police officers to do an extraordinary job. The fact that one of them has fallen in the line of performing that duty is a tragedy for the entire nation.
“I know the entire House will offer their condolences to his family, friends, and colleagues. May he rest in peace.”
SCOTLAND YARD REFERS SHOOTING TO IOPC
Scotland Yard has said it has referred this morning's shooting to the Independent Office for Police Conduct.
The office will now stage an independent investigation into what happened.
The shooting occurred after the suspect had been searched, and questions remain about how he was able to bring a gun into the station.
NO POLICE FIREARM DISCHARGED
No police firearm was discharged before the arrest of the suspect in this morning's shooting, Scotland Yard have said.
The man is alleged to have shot dead one officer in a Croydon police station before turning the gun on himself.
He is now said to be in hospital in a critical condition.
The shooting dead of a police officer inside a Croydon station in the early hours of this morning was a “truly shocking incident”, Met Police Commissioner Cressida Dick has said.
“This is a truly shocking incident in which one of our colleagues has lost his life in the most tragic circumstances,” she said in a statement.
“My heart goes out to his family, direct colleagues and friends.
“Policing is a family, within London and nationally, and we will all deeply mourn our colleague.”
SUSPECT IN 'CRITICAL CONDITION'
The suspect in this morning's shooting remains in a critical condition after reportedly shooting himself.
The 23-year-old was arrested at the scene and taken to hospital.
Tributes were paid to the officer this morning.
One Twitter user wrote: “Such sad news about the police officer in Croydon thinking of family and colleagues met police croydon.”
HOW WAS IT MISSED?
Questions will be asked on how the gun was apparently missed when the suspect was initially searched, after being seen acting suspiciously in Croydon town centre.
It remains unclear why the suspect was arrested.
TURNED GUN ON HIMSELF
The gunman then shot the Met officer before shooting himself in the head shortly before 2am.
It is understood the suspect survived and is in hospital, but his condition is unknown.
The Independent Office for Police Conduct was notified and will today begin examining the shocking circumstances of the officer's death.
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