Two Metropolitan Police officers are under investigation for gross misconduct after a video of a man’s fatal shooting was released on social media.
The force became aware of footage of Craig Smalls’ death in July 2019 circulating online later month, and referred the matter to the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC).
The watchdog determined the matter should be investigated by the Met, which subsequently launched an ongoing investigation to establish the source of the video.
Carol Campbell, Craig’s mother, told TheGuardian the sharing of the video worsened her trauma over the shooting of her son outside a shop in Wembley, London, on 5 July 2019.
Craig, 32, later died in hospital. His killing was caught by a CCTV camera of a fast food outlet located near the incident.
Ms Campbell told the newspaper the police initially claimed that a shop may have leaked the CCTV footage. But it was later revealed that an officer allegedly filmed the footage in the police station using a mobile phone.
She said laughter could be heard in the background of the graphic video, which shows Craig being shot in the head.
Ms Campbell said viewing the footage has made her “an emotional wreck” and added it had affected her family, including Craig’s three children. One of his young sons, who was seven at the time, accidentally found the video after entering his father’s name into YouTube.
Craig’s mother said the allged filming and sharing of the video was a malicious act in her view, saying: “It was so unfair, my son mattered. It shouldn’t have been like this.”
The Met Police said in a statement that a police constable based in the North West Command Unit was arrested on suspicion of misconduct in a public office on 16 July, 2019. He was released under investigation and has been placed on restricted duties.
Another officer, a police sergeant based in the same unit, was interviewed under criminal caution but was not arrested and was also placed on restricted duties.
Both officers have been served with notices informing them they are under investigation for gross misconduct, said a spokesperson for the force.
Seven other officers in the North West Command Unit have been interviewed as part of the ongoing investigation, and have also been served with notices informing them that they are under investigation for misconduct and gross misconduct.
The spokesperson said: “Specialist liaison officers have been working to support Mr Small’s family since his murder. We understand that these allegations have been an additional source of distress for them at an already difficult time.
“We have treated the allegations seriously throughout and are committed to conducting a full and transparent investigation.”
Four men were arrested in relation to the murder, with the trial due to take place next year.
Published at Wed, 10 Feb 2021 14:22:52 +0000