Chris Kaba: Inquest into Police Shooting Death of a man begins

An inquest has been opened into the death of Chris Kaba, who was shot by armed police in south London.

Coroner Andrew Harris expressed his condolences to the 24-year-family old’s after he was shot through the windshield of a car in Streatham Hill on September 5.

Mr Kaba’s family has requested an immediate decision on whether criminal charges should be filed in the case.

The Metropolitan Police officer who fired the fatal shot has been suspended.

The court heard that an unarmed Mr Kaba was driving an Audi that had been linked by police to a firearms incident the day before, despite the fact that his name was not included in the briefing given to officers. It had an automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) marker on it.

At 21:52 BST, about 15 minutes before the shooting, officers in an unmarked police car with no lights or sirens began a pursuit.

Chris Kaba: Inquest opens into death

‘Very personal’

The court heard that after driving the Audi down Kirkstall Gardens, Mr Kaba was stopped by a marked police car, and there was contact between the Audi and the police vehicles.

The officer in front of the Audi then fired a single shot through the windscreen, striking Mr Kaba in the head.

He was taken to hospital, but died soon after midnight on 6 September. A provisional cause of death was given as a “gunshot wound to the head”.

Speaking outside the coroner’s court, his cousin Jefferson Bosela said: “An urgent decision on criminal charges is critical for this family and many others to have faith in a system that is supposed to bring them justice.”

He said that the shooting felt “very personal” for many communities across London, because Mr Kaba could have been their son.

The family has requested that the police officers involved be interviewed under caution, and that the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) keep them updated on the investigation.

“This should never have happened,” Mr Bosela said, flanked by Mr Kaba’s mother Helen Lumuanganu and father Prosper Kaba. This must not happen again.

“We must never accept this as normal. Someone must be held accountable.” Construction worker Mr Kaba was due to become a father when he died.

The hearing was adjourned to allow the IOPC to carry out its investigation. The watchdog is investigating the shooting as a potential homicide.

The IOPC confirmed the probe was set to last between six and nine months, something Mr Kaba’s family said they were “alarmed” at.

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