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11th Sep 2022

Sky News forced to correct TV report after confusing protest over Chris Kaba killing for Queen mourners

Tobi Akingbade

People were not happy.

Sky News  found themselves in hot water after a protest following the killing of Chris Kaba was mistaken for a march in support of the Queen.

Following the death of Kaba, an unarmed black man who was shot dead by Metropolitan Police officers, protesters marched through central London where placards bearing the message “Justice for Chris Kaba” and “Black Lives Matter” could be seen.

However, the broadcaster reported that the massive crowd was in London to honour Queen Elizabeth II, who died peacefully on Thursday aged 96.

Angry social media users pointed out the error as the news anchor had said: “Trafalgar Square, look at that, look at the crowds of people winding their way down… they’ll be working their way up the Mall, and what a walk there is. There are thousands of people lining that route, it really is an incredible sight.

“They’ll work their way up the Mall, very slowly, meeting new friends along the way, talking about their journey here, their memories of the Queen, their good wishes for the new King.”

Sky News later issued an on-air clarification correcting the error, many pointed out that their statement was a correction and not an apology.

The broadcaster said: “Earlier this afternoon, we showed pictures of a crowd of people in Trafalgar Square, and described them as being on their way to Buckingham Palace.

“We’d just like to make it clear that those pictures were actually of a protest taking place over the death of Chris Kaba, who was shot and killed by a police officer in south London. We’ll be reporting in full on that story a little later today.”

Mr Kaba, who was due to become a father, died in hospital in the early hours of Tuesday after being shot following a chase with police on Monday night in Streatham Hill.

The march was also attended by rapper Stormzy who spoke to the crowds, saying: “Chris has a mother, he has a family, he has brothers, he has friends, people who knew him in real life, who for them, it’s unbearable.”

He said there was no way to “sugar coat” what had happened to Mr Kaba and urged them to “have stamina” in their efforts to raise awareness of his death and the events surrounding it.

“Everyone here today, I would encourage everyone to have stamina,” he said.

“And I know it’s a very difficult thing to say… But when these people do these things, they get away with it, because what happens is we do this once, we get tired, we tweet, we get tired, we do it for a week, we do it for two weeks, we do it for a month, and they know we get tired.”

The Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) launched a homicide investigation on Friday after “reviewing” the killing of Mr Kaba, a 24-year-old father-to-be shot dead after the car he was driving was flagged by automatic numberplate recognition cameras in connection with a firearms incident.

The Audi driven by Mr Kaba, which the IOPC said was not registered to him, was hemmed in by two police cars in a residential street in Streatham Hill, south London, before one round was fired from a police weapon.

The Metropolitan Police said Friday that the officer in question “is not currently on operational duties due to the formal post-incident process” and a senior officer “will now carefully consider their work status going forward”.

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