Chris Kaba: Met Police officer to be charged with murder

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Photo showing a smiling Chris Kaba.Kaba family handout

A police officer is to be charged with the murder of Chris Kaba, who was shot in south London last year.

Mr Kaba, 24, died after a police operation in Streatham Hill on 5 September 2022.

The Met Police officer, who cannot be named for legal reasons, will appear at Westminster Magistrates’ Court on Thursday where he will be charged.

The police watchdog said the officer and Mr Kaba’s family had been notified of the decision on Wednesday morning.

Mr Kaba, who was unarmed, was being followed by several police vehicles in Streatham Hill before he turned into Kirkstall Gardens, where he was blocked by a marked car.

He was struck by a single gunshot fired by a Met Police officer into the vehicle he was driving just before 23:00 BST and died in hospital in the early hours of the following morning, an inquest was told.

The construction worker was months away from becoming a father when he was shot.

His death prompted a number of protests, particularly among London’s black communities.

Forensic officers in Streatham

PA Media

In a joint statement, Mr Kaba’s family said they welcomed the charging decision, “which could not have come too soon”.

“Chris was so very loved by our family and all his friends. He had a bright future ahead of him, but his life was cut short.

“Our family and our wider community must see justice for Chris,” they added.

The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) has had the file of evidence since March following a referral from the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC).

The police watchdog previously said no “non-police issue firearm” had been found following a detailed search of the car and surrounding area after the shooting.

Rosemary Ainslie, head of the CPS special crime division, said the CPS had conducted a “thorough review of the evidence”.

Chris Kaba's family speaking outside the inquest

PA Media

The officer is currently suspended from duty and the Met said it would consider misconduct matters after criminal proceedings have concluded.

A spokesperson for the Met Police Federation said being a firearms officer in London was “one of the world’s toughest jobs”, and that decision would “leave serving Metropolitan Police colleagues concerned as they go about their incredibly difficult and dangerous work”.

“Officers who volunteer for the role know the responsibility and accountability that come with it,” they said.

The spokesperson added that the federation continues to support the officer in question.

Met Deputy Assistant Commissioner Helen Millichap described the charging decision as a “significant and serious development” in the case.

She added that the Met “fully supported the IOPC investigation” and “our thoughts are with everyone affected by this case”.

“We must now allow the court process to run its course so it would not be appropriate for me to say more at this stage,” she said.

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