More on the de Menezes Killing

Jean Charles De Menezes was the Brazilian commuter who was erroneously gunned down by the Metropolitan Police Service in the London subway about a month ago. Well now there is a new development. It appears that all the CCTV tapes that should show De Menezes last moments of life are blank.

TAPES from CCTV cameras which should have filmed the last moments of Jean Charles de Menezes were completely blank, police have told Tube security staff.

But the transport workers, who fear they could be blamed for the lack of footage showing how the 27-year-old died, insist that their surveillance equipment was working at the time.

Police removed the CCTV recordings shortly after the Brazilian’s death.

In the words of the Church Lady, “Isn’t that convenient?”

But although there are pictures of Mr de Menezes entering Stockwell station and going through ticket barriers, there has so far been a lack of film from the scene where the shooting took place.

And there are multiple cameras, some which can Pan, Tilt and Zoom (PTZ cameras). But amazingly none of them recorded a single bit of footage. Of course, we find this out after the police take the tapes, but hey it really could just be an amazing coincidence.

Here is a nifty Idea, why not check the tapes from the previous day. If those tapes show footage then I’d say it is less likely that the tapes handed over to the Metropolitan Police Service were blank.

Update: This article indicates that there are four cameras in the station and that according to the log books there were no indications that any of the cameras (let alone 3 or all 4) had any technical problems.

It quoted a senior transport union official as saying: “At least three out of four of the cameras were working. There were no reports of anything wrong with the cameras.

“Sometimes you may have trouble with one camera, but staff cannot understand how none of the four recorded anything. It is most unusual to say the least.”

The article also does note this report from the BBC,

However, the BBC had reported that there was a shortage of CCTV footage for the incident as discs for the cameras had been removed the previous day by police officers investigating the failed 21 July attacks on London transport and not replaced.

Of course, I don’t see the relevance here since the comments about the tapes being blank indactes there were tapes.

FILED UNDER: Europe, Policing, Terrorism, ,
Steve Verdon
About Steve Verdon
Steve has a B.A. in Economics from the University of California, Los Angeles and attended graduate school at The George Washington University, leaving school shortly before staring work on his dissertation when his first child was born. He works in the energy industry and prior to that worked at the Bureau of Labor Statistics in the Division of Price Index and Number Research. He joined the staff at OTB in November 2004.


  1. Anderson says:

    Obviously, al-Qaeda stole the tapes! Their evil hand is everywhere!

  2. DC Loser says:

    Who’s convinced this is yet another unfortunate coincidence? Still giving the police the benefit of the doubt?

  3. McGehee says:

    Well, I already posted on my own blog that if allegations of a royal cock-up (to use the Brit vernacular) and subsequent cover-up turned out to be true, heads should roll.

    And that was before the allegations were ever covered on OTB.