Moment Met Police officer shot dead by suspect at holding cell shown to jury

A jury has been shown the last moments of a custody sergeant's life before he was allegedly shot dead by a handcuffed suspect inside a police cell.

Louis De Zoysa, 25, is accused of shooting Sgt Matt Ratana, 54, with an antique revolver in a holster which had not been spotted by police who arrested him in the street at 1.30am.

He was still packing the loaded gun when he was taken into a cell at Croydon police station in south London, a jury has been told.

CCTV footage played at Northampton Crown Court showed De Zoysa's arrest, the search officers performed in the street and him sitting in a cell as Sgt Ratana walked in.

Another officer told the sergeant the suspect had been arrested for "possession of a firearm aka a bag of what looked like bullets" and having cannabis all which were discovered in the street search.

Sgt Ratana asked his colleague: "So you're probably gonna need a further search?''

The other officer replied: "Yes, hundred per cent.''

Sgt Ratana then ordered De Zoysa to "stand up" so he could be searched again.

He was heard saying to the suspect "mate you were good enough to…" before shots rang out.

Two other officers were then seen pinning De Zoysa to the cell floor.

Though his hands were cuffed behind his back he was able to fire off four shots, it was alleged.

The first hit Sgt Ratana, 54, in the chest piercing his left lung and heart and leaving the officer with nearly 30 years' experience with the Metropolitan Police mortally wounded.

Another shot fired a second later hit the officer in the leg.

A second later a third bullet struck a cell wall.

A fourth shot hit De Zoysa in the neck leaving him brain damaged, the court has heard.

Jurors were also shown body worn camera footage from the officers who stopped De Zoysa as he walked through Norbury, south London, dressed in a black woolly hat and long dark coat and carrying a holdall.

After he was told he had been stopped on suspicion of going equipped for a burglary he admitted he had around 3g of cannabis on him.

The footage showed him being handcuffed and searched.

Due to the cuffs he was wearing the searching officer had to ask a colleague to lift up his long jacket so he could pat him down.

The prosecution has told the jury the gun and holster were probably hidden in his armpit.

De Zoysa, 25, who appeared in the dock in a wheelchair and with his right arm in a sling, denies murder.

Jurors have been told they will have to consider whether he deliberately fired the revolver or was suffering from diminished responsibility.

Imran Khan KC, defending, told the court De Zoysa was having an autistic meltdown at the time of the shooting.

He said: "Louis De Zoysa says he did not mean to or want to kill Sgt Ratana or to cause him really serious harm.

"The reason Louis De Zoysa says he is not guilty of murder is because at the time he was suffering from an abnormality of mental function.

"The abnormality of mental function that Louis De Zoysa was suffering was an autistic meltdown.''

The trial continues.

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