Fishmongers’ Hall: Firearms officer was surprised Usman Khan survived first shotson June 4, 2021 at 2:14 pm

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Usman Khan was shot multiple times on London Bridge after being chased from Fishmongers’ Hall.

Still from a video clip showing Usman Khan praising Learning Together

image copyrightMet Police

A firearms officer has told an inquest of his surprise that a convicted terrorist had not died despite being shot multiple times.

Usman Khan killed Jack Merritt, 25, and Saskia Jones, 23, at a prisoner rehabilitation conference at Fishmongers’ Hall on 29 November 2019.

He was chased on to London Bridge then shot 20 times in separate bursts.

The officer, who shot Khan four times, told the inquest: “All I could think was: ‘Why aren’t you dead?”‘

The hearing at London’s Guildhall has been told how the 28-year-old was shot twice by officers initially, before being shot 18 more times after he unexpectedly sat up eight minutes later.

The firearms officer – referred to as AZ99 to protect his identity – told the inquest he was concerned Khan was reaching for a suicide belt, which was wrapped about his waist.

Fake suicide vest

image copyrightMet Police

He told the inquest: “At that point there, I thought: ‘We’re dead.'”

“This was the first movement he did that was an action rather than a reaction.

“It felt like a defined movement of: I’m now going to do something to you.”

The belt, which Khan had worn on the journey to London from his home in Stafford, turned out to be fake.

Map showing location of incident at London Bridge

CCTV showed Khan to be breathing deeply, writhing around, and appearing to mutter to himself after being shot twice by police.

The inquest heard after being shot twice, Khan summoned the energy to sit up from his prone position on the floor.

He appeared to turn his head sideways and stare directly at the armed officers for a few seconds when he was hit by police gunfire.

He briefly touched a wound on his forehead before slumping finally to the ground. He was pronounced dead an hour later when the scene was declared safe.

Saskia Jones and Jack Merritt

image copyrightMet Police

AZ99 said: “He did fall back after one shot.

“Quite surreal – he put his hand towards his head, he pulled his hand away to look for blood.

“All I could think was: ‘Why aren’t you dead?”‘

The inquest continues.

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