A man in his twenties was fatally injured by police “response fire” on Tuesday evening during an anti-drug operation in Berre-L’Étang, near Marseille, while he was aboard a fleeing vehicle, we learned on Wednesday.
The facts took place early Tuesday evening, when Marseille police officers from the Anti-Narcotics Office (Ofast) “were trying to intercept individuals suspected of engaging in drug trafficking”, said the Aix prosecutor’s office on Wednesday. -en-Provence in a press release.
Suspects reportedly ‘refused to stop’
“In a surveillance operation near a hangar”, the investigators surprised “two men loading cannabis into a car”, according to a source familiar with the matter. Faced with the intervention of the police to arrest them, the suspects, boarding their vehicle, would however have “refused to stop”, provoking “response fire”.
According to the press release from Olivier Poulet, deputy public prosecutor of Aix-en-Provence, the vehicle would have “hit two police officers”, then forcing the officials to “use their weapon to arrest it”. The two investigators would only be “slightly affected”, he said.
Two police officers in custody
Still according to the prosecution, the fugitives’ vehicle was found abandoned just a few hundred meters away, immobilized on the road, the tires burst, after hitting a low wall. The driver had fled, but the passenger was found dead at the scene. From a source familiar with the matter, fifty kilos of cannabis were found on board the car.
Two of the Ofast police officers involved in this operation were in custody on Wednesday, as part of the investigation opened by the IGPN, the police force, said the prosecution.
At the same time, another investigation was entrusted to the gendarmes of the Marseille research section for attempted homicide on a person responsible for public order.