Police face charges over barrister's siege death

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The Independent Online

The police watchdog asked prosecutors to consider bringing criminal charges against the police marksmen who shot dead a barrister after a five-hour siege at his home in Chelsea.

The Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) finished its investigation into the shooting of Mark Saunders and will pass a file to the Crown Prosecution Service for consideration. Mr Saunders, 32, was killed in May last year after officers were called to his £2.25m home over reports he had been drinking heavily and had fired a gun.

A siege ensued during which Mr Saunders shot at the Metropolitan Police's CO19 specialist firearms unit three times, hitting a house opposite. He was then shot at least five times and died.

His family questioned the police decision to shoot, saying Mr Saunders posed no danger at the time he was killed, more than 20 minutes after firing his last shot. The IPCC decision means some of the nine officers who opened fire on him could be charged with murder or manslaughter.