A Paris police officer has been charged in connection with a fatal election night shooting

A French police officer has been charged with voluntary manslaughter after fatally shooting a motorist and his car passenger in central Paris on Sunday night, not far from where French President Emmanuel Macron celebrated his re-election.

 

On the scenic Pont Neuf bridge, the 24-year-old cop fired his assault rifle to try to stop the car from hurtling towards his colleagues. Later, he claimed he was acting in self-defense. He was taken in for interrogation by the police’s internal investigations department right after, as is customary protocol after officers use guns. Prosecutors will now have to evaluate whether the officer used excessive force in his response.

 

According to a police report, about a dozen rounds were fired, with “five or six shots injuring the passengers.”

 

A judge heard the officer on Wednesday and decided to charge him with voluntary manslaughter in the death of the driver.

 

The killing of the front-seat passenger and the injuring of a passenger in the back seat were charged as “wilful violence by a person in power.”

 

The officer was forced to surrender his weapon and was barred from doing any police responsibilities that required public contact.

 

Charges are slammed by the police union.

The Alliance police officers’ union denounced the ruling, calling for a demonstration in front of the ancient Paris courthouse on Monday to defend “the assumption of justifiable defense.”

 

According to the police report, the car was parked on the banks of the Seine, facing the wrong way, with its danger lights flashing, prompting the five-person foot patrol to investigate.

 

When confronted, the driver accelerated and sped towards one officer, who jumped out of the path.

 

The two occupants who were slain had a long criminal history, which included narcotics offenses.

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