Mark Duggan: Funeral of man shot by police in Tottenham
- 9 September 2011
- From the section London
Hundreds of mourners have gathered for the funeral of a man who was shot by police in north London - a death which was followed by riots across England.
Mark Duggan's cortege left his parents' home and made its way through Tottenham's Broadwater Farm Estate to his private funeral.
A local protest over his death in Tottenham on 4 August triggered four nights of disorder.
The 29-year-old's death is being investigated by the police watchdog.
His coffin, in a white carriage pulled by four white horses, was adorned with flowers.
On it were the words "grandson", "son" and "dad".
Led by Mr Duggan's brothers Marlon Duggan and Shaun Hall, it was followed by a long procession of cars.
Mourners gathered outside the New Testament Church of God in Wood Green, north London, where the beat of a drum was heard as his funeral got under way.
The family of Mr Duggan said on Thursday they had "no faith" in the Independent Police Complaints Commission's investigation into his death.
Mr Duggan was a passenger in a minicab which was apparently stopped by police near Tottenham Hale Tube station.
Initial reports that he shot at police were dismissed by ballistic tests, which found that a bullet which lodged itself in one officer's radio was of a kind issued to police.
A non-police issue handgun was recovered close to the scene of his death.
An inquest into Mr Duggan's death heard the father-of-four died from a single gunshot wound to the chest.
In a statement handed out ahead of the service, senior pastor Bishop Barrington Burrell said "grave questions" had been raised by Mr Duggan's death.
While he said "angry responses" may be understandable, he condemned the ensuing riots saying, "this kind of negative reaction is unjustifiable".
He added current tensions could only be resolved with a "positive paradigm shift both on the part of police and the community".
"On the one hand the police respectively need to change their attitude towards the black community, and the black community also needs to change their attitude in response to the police."
He also questioned the government's reaction in the wake of the violence, adding: "The government should be absolutely aware that proposals to withdraw benefits from convicted rioters or their parents may only heighten the problem."
The Metropolitan Police said it had now arrested more than 2,000 people in connection with the rioting and looting across London.
Violence also spread to other UK cities, including Manchester, Birmingham and Nottingham.
'First real love'
Ken Hinds, a friend of Mr Duggan and chair of the local stop-and-search monitoring group, estimated that about 750 people had packed into the church for the service.
Describing the father of four as a man who "made a positive difference", Mr Hinds said: "Mark was a family man, Mark's life centred on his children. He looked after his children and other young people looked up to him and respected him.
"That's the side of Mark I knew and that's the side of Mark I want to remember."
During the service, Mr Duggan's partner Semone Wilson paid tribute to her "first real love" in a message read out by her sister, Michelle Palmer-Scott.
She said: "Mark, my love, my friend and father of my children, my first real love - we laughed together, we cried together, we faced trials and tribulations together.
"We had our ups and we had our downs but through it all, I loved him."
She added: "I can't believe you're gone, I can't believe you're not here. But you will always have that special place in my heart."
'Come and weep'
A speech from pastor Nims Obunge drew massive applause as he said the local community had now seen "too much blood".
He said: "Let mothers not have to come and bury their children. Let fathers not have to come and weep for their children the way we weep today.
"For so long we have said there is something wrong, for so long we have ached about what is wrong and it took the death of Mark to show that there's something wrong."
Following the service, the congregation went to Wood Green Cemetery for a private ceremony, ahead of a reception at Broadwater Farm Community Centre.
The inquest into Mr Duggan's death has been adjourned until 12 December.