Dramatic footage has been shown for the first time at a public inquiry into the police shooting of a suspected drug dealer seven years ago in north London.
The one-minute video, filmed from one of the police surveillance cars, recorded the volley of shots which killed 24-year-old Azelle Rodney, who was in the back seat of a car when it was stopped.
Intelligence suggested Rodney and the two others in the car were armed with machine guns on their way to carry out a robbery.
After the shooting, police found only three pistols, one of which was incapable of firing live ammunition.
At the time it was reported that Rodney had a gun in his hand, but it was later established that this was false. He was hit six times.
Investigations cleared police of blame, but laws protecting intelligence have prevented a coroner from holding an inquest into his death.
The inquiry is being chaired by a retired high court judge, Sir Christopher Holland. It is unique in that it will hear evidence for the first time from intelligence officers working for customs and police as to why Rodney and others were targeted.
It is the culmination of a seven-year campaign by Rodney’s mother, Susanne Alexander.
Counsel for the inquiry, Ashley Underwood QC, outlined how customs were tracking a group of Columbian drug traffickers operating out of Edgware, north London, and uncovered a gang who were staging drug rip-offs – stealing from other dealers at gunpoint.
Mr Rodney’s name came up but had not been physically identified.
Intelligence officers’ logs shown to the inquiry show that customs had been tipped off the gang were planning another rip-off in north London and tailed three men, including Azelle Rodney, before staging a “hard stop” when the officer known as E7 opened fire out of his rear window into the suspects’ car.
The inquiry has been told the video will be examined frame by frame, and there is also a reconstruction to illustrate what both the firearms officer E7 could see and how his victim Azelle Rodney may have reacted to the hard stop.
Some see the inquiry as a blueprint for a similar type of investigation into the shooting of Mark Duggan in July last year, because the law denies a coroner access to covert intelligence material.
The Azelle Rodney inquiry has so far refused to release the video following objections by the Metropolitan Police.