Health and Safety 9 – surveillance officer Ivor was wearing a rucksack
That doesn’t sound like a good idea when you have firearms officers chasing a suspected attempted suicide bomber who attempted to detonate a rucksack only the day before.
But it’s easy to be critical in hindsight.
Pausing to warn family members of the evidence he was about to give, Ivor said he saw Mr Menezes stand and advance.
He judged that he could have been a suicide bomber preparing to detonate a device – and that he needed to restrain him.
“I grabbed Mr Menezes by wrapping both my arms around his torso, pinning his arms against his sides,” he said.
“The right side of my head was against his torso, pushing him back into his seat. He appeared to stiffen up and he was not in a natural sitting position.
“I felt his head turn towards me and I was aware of a CO19 [firearms] officer kneeling on the seat to my left.
“I heard a gunshot very close to my left ear. I was hit by the shockwave of a firearm being discharged.”
Ivor told the court how he was then dragged away by one of the armed officers.
Within seconds he had a long-barrelled gun “levelled against my chest” and a pistol against his head, he said.
“I held out my hands and shouted ‘police’,” said the covert officer.
“It’s worthy of note that I was dressed virtually identically to Mr Menezes. Denim jacket, denim jeans.”
The officer said he was also carrying a rucksack, unlike Mr Menezes who only had a newspaper.
Only when he had been dragged against the platform wall and was able to produce his chequered police cap did the danger to him pass, he said.
Have I got this right? That if you’re a wannabe suicide bomber, and you are about to be shot by armed police, restrain a fellow tube passenger, shout “he’s here!”, then when that person is shot, hold out your hands and say “police!”
More coverage and detail in the Manchester Evening News, including Ivor’s claim that,
“I requested via my radio whether or not Mr de Menezes should be detained. I received the reply that I should wait. I was certainly in a position to effect some sort of detention of Mr de Menezes.”
The case continues.