Two of three IOPC investigations as a result of the Public Inquiry into the fatal shooting of Anthony Grainger have now concluded.
Mr Grainger was fatally wounded in Culcheth, Cheshire, by a Greater Manchester Police (GMP) firearms officer during a police operation in March 2012.
Following the conclusion of the Public Inquiry in June 2019, GMP referred several matters to the IOPC that arose from the Inquiry Report. These referrals led the IOPC to commence three new independent investigations in March 2020.
The first of these investigations is complete. This investigation looked at the conduct of a serving GMP officer and their management of two firearms officers’ training records. Our investigation found evidence that the serving officer failed to inform GMP’s chief firearm instructor that the two firearms officers – later involved in the armed operation in which Anthony Grainger was fatally shot – had previously failed a Counter Terrorist Specialist Firearms Officer training course.
However, the IOPC determined that this did not amount to a case to answer for breaching police professional standards on the part of the officer. We also established that the course failure did not mean that the firearm officers should not have been part of the armed operation – neither of the officers fatally shot Anthony Grainger.
A summary of our investigation will be published in due course. Our report has been provided to GMP who agreed with our findings.
A second investigation into former Assistant Chief Constable Terry Sweeney, former Superintendent Mark Granby and a former Chief Inspector regarding their command and control of the policing operation has been discontinued. This is because it has become clear that some of the material which may be relevant to the decisions to be made at the conclusion of any investigation, and to provide adequate disclosure to the officers, could not be disclosed. In these circumstances, our only option is to discontinue this independent investigation.
The third of our investigations into GMP’s acquisition of a CS dispersal canister which was not approved by the Home Office and was used during the policing operation in which Mr Grainger died continues. On its conclusion, we will need to decide whether the evidence supports a referral to the Crown Prosecution Service to determine whether criminal charges should follow, and whether there is any case to answer for misconduct.