The deputy commissioner of London’s Metropolitan Police testified that he witnessed a fellow constable get stabbed to death by a terrorist during a March 2017 attack — and he did not act, according to the Independent.
Craig Mackey, who was acting commissioner of the Met Police at the time of the attack, gave his account of the event as part of an investigation into the deaths of the terrorist, Khalid Masood, and the victims he ran over with his vehicle before fatally stabbing Constable Keith Palmer.
“I think anyone who came up against that individual would have faced serious, serious injury, if not death,” Mackey told investigators. Moreover, he noted that although he had an “instinct” to get out of the car, he felt he wasn’t properly equipped because he was unarmed and wearing a short-sleeved shirt.
Among the wounded, many of them foreign tourists, were 12 Britons, four South Koreans, three French high school students, two Romanians, two Greeks and one citizen each of China, Germany, Ireland, Italy and the United States.
The American killed in the attack was identified as Kurt Cochran from Utah, reported the New York Times. He and his wife Melissa Payne Cochran were on vacation celebrating their 25th wedding anniversary.
On March 22, 2017, Khalid Masood drove a vehicle into pedestrians on the Westminster Bridge and then crashed into a barrier. Four people were killed: Kurt Cochran, Leslie Rhodes, Aysha Frade, and Andreea Cristea. Twenty-nine others were injured, reported The Blaze.
After crashing, Masood exited the vehicle with two knives, running toward the gates of the parliament building, where he stabbed Palmer.
Mackey was leaving a meeting at the Houses of Parliament when he said he heard a loud bang caused by Masood crashing the car. Subsequent to the automobile attack, he locked the doors of his vehicle and witnessed Palmer being stabbed.
“I could see PC Palmer moving backwards and him going down,” Mackey said.
Mackey said he locked the doors because he was in the car with two unarmed colleagues, he himself was not armed, and he felt the best thing to do was to look out for their safety while properly equipped officers handled the attack.
“There was quite a lot of confusion about what was going on,” Mackey said. “Clearly the way that the male came in and the purposeful way he came, he was clearly a threat.”
Mackey said he started to get out of the vehicle once officers had shot and killed Masood, but officers on the scene told him to get to safety and manage the department’s response to the attack.
The entire attack lasted 82 seconds, according to the Independent.
“The thing that still shakes me about the attack is that it was 80-plus seconds in total,” Mackey said. “It didn’t feel like that it felt an awfully long time.”