A Nigerian-born footballer was Tasered and shot dead by police in a house “after he murdered his neighbour who went to help a child being held captive inside,” DailyMail reports.
Kelvin Igweani, 24, was pronounced dead at the scene after an officer fired four shots, Milton Keynes Coroner’s Court was told on Monday.
Thames Valley Police had been called to an ongoing disturbance at a property in Denmead, Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire, at around 9.40am on June 26.
After forcing their way inside, police discovered the body of 38-year-old highways officer, Richard Woodcock, who had arrived from a neighbouring property “to help save a young boy believed to be at risk of significant harm,” the inquest heard.
Igweani then “became aggressive” towards officers with a Taser being discharged before he barricaded himself in the main bedroom, during which time a child could be heard crying with the “sounds of ongoing assault,” the court was told.
It was heard that officers gained entry to the bedroom, at which point a police firearm was discharged.
Inquests into the deaths of Woodcock and Igweani were opened at two separate hearings ton Monday.
Speaking at the opening of the inquest into Woodcock’s death, Detective Chief Inspector Stuart Blaik, from Thames Valley Police major crime unit, said Igweani was suspected of murdering Woodcock.
He said police received a 999 call reporting an ongoing disturbance at Two Mile Ash at about 9.40am, adding: “Neighbours had reported hearing a female screaming and shouting for help.
“A female and a young child had managed to flee the address prior to police arrival.
“However, Richard Woodcock, from a neighbouring property, had gone to the address to help save a young boy, as it was believed he was still in the property, and at risk of significant harm.”
Blaik said police were unable to get in as the door was locked, but that entry was gained by firearms officers who responded to the incident in an unarmed capacity to provide urgent support.
“Having had to force entry to the address, the officers immediately saw a deceased male, who has now been identified as Richard Woodcock, on the floor.
“And they were also aware of a distressed young child within the address,’ he said.
Blaik said another man, now known to be Igweani, “immediately became aggressive” towards the officers.
“A Taser was discharged, but this was ineffective, and Kelvin Igweani barricaded himself within the main bedroom,” Blaik told the court.
The inquest heard armed officers then tried to gain entry to that room.
He added: “A child could be heard crying, along with the sounds of an ongoing assault. Entry was gained to the bedroom, at which point a police firearm was discharged.”
Blaik said police officers and ambulance staff gave first aid, but Igweani was declared dead at 10.33am.
“Kelvin Igweani is suspected of the murder of Richard Woodcock and the serious assault of the young male child within the address,” he added.
Blaik confirmed a post-mortem examination had taken place at Milton Keynes University Hospital and the medical cause of death for Mr Woodcock was given as traumatic head injuries.
Coroner Tom Osborne adjourned the inquest to November 18, when he hopes to set a date for the full inquest.
Osborne said he knew that Woodcock was “a very popular man” within Milton Keynes Council.
Speaking at the opening of the inquest Igweani’s death, David Bannister from the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) said the body was aware that Thames Valley Police received a 999 call concerning a domestic incident.
He told the hearing that the IOPC has viewed body-worn video evidence and seen that the armed officers forced entry into the property, and immediately came across a dead man.
“They were then confronted by Mr Kelvin Igweani and Taser was discharged. This Taser discharge was ineffective.
“Mr Igweani moved to another room in the address and closed the door. The officers identified that Mr Igweani was in the room with a young child.
“The officers heard noises from the room, and believed that Mr Igweani was harming the child.
“The officers forced entry into the room. As officers gained entry into this room, Mr Igweani moved towards them, and one officer fired four shots.
“Taser was also discharged. Medical attention was provided to Mr Igweani, but this was unsuccessful, and he was pronounced dead at 10.33am,” Bannister said.
Bannister confirmed the medical cause of death was given as gunshot wounds to the chest.
The coroner adjourned the inquest to November 17, when a pre-inquest review may take place.A date was not set for the full inquest hearing