Great Britain

Who was Mark Duggan – Tottenham man shot by police whose death sparked the 2011 London riots

THE fatal shooting of Mark Duggan by police led to some of the worst riots in England's recent history.

An inquest into his death in 2011 cleared armed officers of any wrongdoing, sparking outrage with his family and campaigners who continue to accuse the police of racism.

Who was Mark Duggan?

The 29-year-old was born in Tottenham, North London, in 1981 to mother Pamela and his late father Bruno, and has a younger brother named Marlon.

He went to live with his aunt Carole in Manchester, where his mother originates from, when he was 12 when his behaviour in school began to deteriorate, before he returned to Tottenham when he was 17.

Mr Duggan went on to father six children - the youngest was reportedly born after his death.

He was reportedly believed to have become involved in gangs and drugs - an accusation denied by his family.

Det Ch Insp Mick Foote, from the Met Police's gang crime unit Trident, said Mr Duggan was a "confrontational and violent" member of Tottenham Man Dem.

His late uncle was gangland boss Desmond “Dessie” Noonan, whose feared crime family have run Manchester’s underworld for 20 years, and once hinted he was responsible for 27 murders.

When did Mark Duggan Die?

Mark Duggan was killed by police officers on 4 August 2011- this week it will be the 10th anniversary of the riots.

On the day of his death police stated they were trying to arrest him after intelligence suggested he was planning to collect a gun from a man called Kevin Hutchinson-Foster in East London.

Mr Duggan was pronounced dead at 6.41pm, and police say they located a firearm on a grass area less than 5 metres from his body.

How did Duggan die?

Met Police officers received intelligence from Operation Dibri in April 2010 that he had carried and used a firearm in public, according to an investigation by the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC).

He became subject of the force's surveillance team as part of Operation Trident in January 2011 and Scotland Yard says that in the months before his death they received information suggesting he was "actively seeking to distribute controlled drugs and firearms".

Mr Duggan was reportedly aware that he was being watched, and wrote in a text to his girlfriend: "The feds are following me", moments before he was killed.

It was later suggested that he was a "well known gangster" and police saw him as a "major player",  the Daily Telegraph reported at the time.

Surveillance officers followed a taxi, in which he was a passenger, back to Tottenham before several unmarked police cars stop the vehicle.

The firearms officer told the inspector he had fired several shots after "seeing Mr Duggan raise a 'gun-shaped item in a sock' in his direction".

An inquest jury decided in January 2014 that Mr Duggan had been lawfully killed, after ruling that he did not have a gun when he was shot but that it was more likely than not that he had thrown a gun on to some nearby grass shortly before.

Mr Duggan's family reacted with fury at the ruling and vowed to "get justice" for him.

His funeral took place on September 9, 2011, at New Testament Church of God in Wood Green, North London, with a 1,000-strong congregation, with mourners who couldn't fit inside standing on the pavement.

What happened after his family appealed against the inquest verdict of Mark Duggan's death?

Mr Duggan's family went to the Court of Appeal to quash the verdict ruling his shooting lawful.

Three judges rejected the case on March 29.

At the appeal court, the family had argued jurors should also have been directed to consider whether the police officer's belief that Mr Duggan had a gun was also reasonable.

But the judges said there was "no need for the coroner to spell out to the jury that, as part of their decision whether V53 honestly believed that Mr Duggan had a gun and was about to use it, they needed to consider whether such a belief was reasonable".

What happened after Mark Duggan's death?

News of the fatal shooting of Mark Duggan spread quickly and outrage at the killing triggered riots across the country.

Two days after his death, Mr Duggan's relatives marched from the Broadwater Farm estate where they lived to Tottenham police station, chanting "we want answers".

Tensions quickly began to escalate, with two members of the waiting crowd attacking police cars and setting them on fire.

Rioting then spread to other parts of London, in which shops were looted, buildings set alight and stand-offs with police.

Other parts of the country, including Birmingham, Bristol and Manchester, followed suit in subsequent days, with some citing issues with police, poverty and racial tensions as motivations.

Then Prime Minister David Cameron denied the riots were linked to Mr Duggan's death and condemned the violence as an "excuse by opportunist thugs in gangs".

Speaking in parliament at the time, Mr Cameron said: "It is simply preposterous for anyone to suggest that people looting in Tottenham at the weekend, still less three days later Salford, were in any way doing so because of the death of Mark Duggan.

"The young people stealing flat screen televisions and burning shops that was not about politics or protest, it was about theft."

Protests have continued to take place in the years after his death, with more than 300 people marching on the fifth anniversary in 2016.

Demonstrators could be heard shouting "murderers" and “no justice, no peace” through the streets of London.

The demonstrators said there was no sign of institutional racism changing in the Metropolitan Police.

Tottenham Rights campaigner Stafford Scott told the crowd that instead of being in a “post-racial society”, it is one in which racism is still “creeping” in.

Members of the Justice for Mark Duggan campaign walked from Broadwater Farm estate, where he lived, to Tottenham police station, where a vigil was held.

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