World News – UA – Shock after rare murder of British policeman in the line of duty


British police paid silent tributes on Friday and flags were half-masted after a longtime officer became the first to be shot dead in the line of duty for over eight years old

Sergeant Matiu Ratana, 54, was gunned down by a 23-year-old man at Croydon Custody Center, south London, around 2:15 a.m. (0115 GMT), and died in hospital

The suspect, who had been arrested for possession of drugs with the intention of supplying and possession of ammunition, turned the weapon on himself and was reportedly in critical but stable condition

Metropolitan Police Commissioner Cressida Dick said Ratana, who had come to Britain from New Zealand and was known as Matt, was « killed for no reason »

Originally from Hawke’s Bay on the east coast of New Zealand’s North Island, he joined the Met in 1991 after college and spent nearly 30 years as a uniformed officer in the british capital

He played for the London Irish and the force rugby union team, before becoming a coach at East Grinstead, near Croydon He leaves a partner and an adult son from a previous relationship

« As a colleague he was of great stature and big heart, a sympathetic and knowledgeable policeman, » Dick said

« A charming man, highly respected by officers and staff, and by the public, including the suspects he arrested or treated in police custody

« He was very well known locally and will be remembered in Croydon, as well as at the Met and throughout the world of rugby »

Dick said footage from security cameras and the police corps would be closely scrutinized as part of the investigation, after media suggested the suspect may not have been thoroughly searched before entering the guard room

Many British police officers carry tasers but are not routinely armed, although the forces have tactical firearms units to respond quickly to incidents

According to the Independent Office for Police Conduct, which sent investigators to the scene, no police firearms were fired

The suspect was handcuffed and apparently opened fire in the guard room with a gun as officers prepared to search him, he added

Service deaths in Britain are rare and the gunfire has sent shock waves through police forces across the country Flags were lowered and officers stood in a minute of silence in memory by Ratana

His death came as the UK government sought to introduce tougher penalties for attacks on emergency service workers

Prime Minister Boris Johnson offered his « deepest condolences » to Ratana’s family, writing on Twitter that « we owe a huge debt to those who risk their own lives to protect us »

Police Minister Kit Malthouse told Parliament: « We ask our police to do an extraordinary job

« The fact that one of them fell in the line of duty is a tragedy for the whole nation »

Fiona Bone and Nicola Hughes were the last British police officers to be shot while on duty, when they were ambushed in a grenade and gun attack in September 2012

They were killed by drug dealer Dale Cregan as they responded to a burglary report in Manchester, north-west England

Since then, five other officers have been killed on duty – four by vehicles as they pursued suspects and one, Keith Palmer, who was stabbed in a terrorist attack on Parliament in 2017

Ratana is the 17th Met officer to be killed by a firearm since the end of World War II, according to the National Police Memorial Honor Roll

Policeman, Metropolitan Police, Cressida Dick, Croydon

News from the world – UA – Shock after rare murder of British policeman in the line of duty


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