Anthony Grainger report released today in Parliament
11 July 2019
The Report of the Anthony Grainger Inquiry was published in Parliament today.
Anthony Grainger was shot dead by armed officers from the Tactical Firearms Unit of Greater Manchester Police (GMP) as he sat in the driver’s seat of a stationary car in a car park in Culcheth, Cheshire, on the evening of 3 March 2012. He and two other men in the car were unarmed.
GMP had the men under surveillance and executed a ‘hard stop’ during which the fatal shooting occurred.
In an excoriating 350 page report the Inquiry Chair, Judge Thomas Teague QC, found GMP were “to blame” for the death and that the police operation breached Article 2 because of a catalogue of serious failings, in particular by senior commanders. The Judge heavily criticised GMP not only for the fatal shooting but also for completing command logs after the event and trying to pass them off as contemporaneous, serious failures in disclosure, and incorrect statements made to the criminal trial of GMP for H&S offences, which was subsequently stayed.
Commanding officers bore the brunt of the critical findings which included that four officers – including two commanders and a firearms Tactical Adviser – were not professionally competent at the time and should not have been part of the operation. The intelligence profile and briefings, the planning, and the execution of the operation were deeply flawed and the commanders treated the ‘hard stop’ tactic as a natural conclusion of the armed deployment rather than a high risk option of past resort.
The shooter, known by the cypher Q9, had been led into error by an inaccurate and misleading intelligence briefing, but he had also taken account of inaccurate and unfounded anecdotal accounts given to him by other officers. Q9 was particularly criticised for asserting in evidence that he would not do anything differently if presented with the same situation.
Gail Hadfield Grainger, Mr Grainger’s partner, is calling for corporate manslaughter and perverting the course of justice charges to be brought against GMP, and urgent intervention by the Home Office to prevent anything similar recurring, given the strength of the criticisms of GMP’s firearms unit and senior commanders.