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Attacks on the Met Police's Deputy Commissioner for locking himself in his car during the Westminster attack have been criticised as "confused, unpleasant, personalised and ignorant" by London's most senior police officer.
Sir Craig Mackey, the Met Police's acting chief at the time, witnessed the murder of PC Keith Palmer in Westminster from a locked car.
He told an inquest into the attack his instinct to get out of the car when he saw Khalid Masood attack, but he stayed because he had no protective equipment.
"For obvious reasons, whilst the inquest has been underway I have not made any comments on the extraordinary amount of confused, unpleasant, personalised and ignorant commentary by some on the actions of the Deputy Commissioner" Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police, Cressida Dick, said
Speaking at the conclusion of the inquest,Ms Dick said: "These criticisms are simply not supported by the evidence. As the Chief Coroner has made clear there was nothing he could have done to stop Masood.
"PC Palmer was under attack practically as soon as Sir Craig saw the attacker. What Sir Craig did was sensible and proper, and was intended to protect others in the car with him."
"I welcome the Inquest conclusion that our officers acted lawfully in shooting a terrorist and murderer.
"The professionalism, bravery and compassion shown by the plain clothed officers in stopping a terrorist and then immediately trying to save his life are in the best traditions of policing. They, and so many other Met officers that terrible day, did an incredible job responding in very difficult circumstances.
An inquest has found that Khalid Masood, who carried out a terror attack at Westminster in March 2017, was lawfully killed by police.