Woman shot dead after stand-off
compiled from various sources
published: 4WardEver UK – 20 November 2007
Updates on this case are listed at the foot of this item
Ann Sanderson, aged 37, was shot by a police marksman after a stand-off in a Kent market town and died from a single gunshot wound to the chest.
London-born Ms Sanderson, of Sevenoaks, was known to her friends as Tosh, is thought to be the first woman shot dead by UK police for nearly 27 years. Prior to the shooting, the only woman to have been shot dead by police since 1980 was 16-year-old Gail Kinchin. She was accidentally killed that year by West Midlands police while she was being held hostage.
Police attended the scene after receiving reports of a woman armed with a gun (believed to be a BB gun), in Sevenoaks in the early hours of Monday 11 June 2007. An investigation was launched by the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) after the killing. An IPCC statement said Ms Sanderson was pronounced dead at the scene.
Deputy Senior Investigator for the IPCC, Bill Stone, said: “At 4am on Monday June 11 the IPCC was informed by Kent Police of a shooting incident that the IPCC is now investigating.”The deceased was formally identified on Monday 11 June 2007 as Ann Sanderson, who was born in London on 2 September 1969.”
A post-mortem examination was carried out on 12 June 2007, by David Rouse, a Home Office forensic pathologist. Cause of death was determined as a gunshot wound to the chest.
It was reported that Ann was engaged in a stand-off with police in a deserted department store car park before being shot. The IPCC said police were first alerted at about 1.20am to a woman in the High Street area with a gun. A firearm was recovered but no further details were given.
Witnesses described hearing shouting during a 20-minute stand-off, followed by a single gunshot at about 3am Monday. School caretaker Kevin Taylor, 47, whose Buckhurst Avenue home overlooks the car park, said he heard someone shout: “Drop the weapon.” He added: “There was a bit of shouting and stuff, and it was all over in about 20 minutes.
The inquest into Ann’s death started on 14 June 2007 at Tunbridge Wells Magistrates’ Court. Investigator Bill Stone told the inquest that two armed response police vehicles were deployed to the scene following reports to Kent Police HQ.
In May 2010 an inquest jury ruled that Ann was lawfully killed. The decision followed three weeks of deliberation, in which police, Tosh’s partner and gun experts gave their evidence to coroner Roger Hatch.
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