10th July 2014

Deborah Coles, co-director of INQUEST said:

"The shooting of Cherry Groce was devastating for her and her family. Their 29 year struggle for accountability included a lengthy battle to obtain public funding to be represented at the inquest, in circumstances where apparently unlimited funds are available to the Commissioner and individual police officers. Legal aid ensured the first and only rigorous public examination of the evidence which has resulted in today's welcome conclusion.

"It is vital both for the family and public interest that when citizens are shot by police officers, there is a robust and fearless inquiry into the appropriateness and lawfulness of that use of force. However cuts to legal aid mean that similar cases may well not receive this kind of vital public scrutiny.

"Cherry Groce’s shooting also raised important concerns about the oppressive policing of the black community and the use of lethal force by the police generally: concerns as pertinent now as they were three decades ago.”