UK
03/12/2013 11:30 GMT | Updated 23/01/2014 18:58 GMT

Lee Rigby Suspect Charged At Police And Was Gunned Down, Murder Trial Told

A court has heard about the dramatic moment one of the suspects in the Lee Rigby murder trial was shot as he charged at police.

An armed officer said she feared for her life when Michael Adebolajo, 28, ran towards the BMW X5 she had driven to Woolwich in the aftermath of the soldier's death.

Prosecutor Richard Whittam QC read her account to jurors at the Old Bailey, in which she said: "I saw a black male running at me waving both his hands in the air in a chopping motion. In his right hand I saw what I call a meat cleaver or a machete.

"I instantly thought 'he's going to kill me'. I went to draw my Glock. Due to my position in the car, the internal door has a panel jutting out, I could not immediately draw my Glock out due to this. It was a split second decision to draw my Taser.

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CCTV showed Lee Rigby getting off the tube at Woolwich Station

"I could still see the look in the suspect's eyes. They were so wide and I could see the whites of them. He was shouting something."

She then saw a second suspect, said to be Michael Adebowale, 22, holding a gun.

"I thought 'Oh my God he's going to shoot me'. I feared for my life."

Video footage of Adebolajo charging towards the officers and flying into the air as he was shot was played to the court.

Adebowale also falls to the ground as he is shot.

One officer is seen keeping her gun trained on Adebolajo as he lies on the ground, while another is seen rushing back to the police car to get a medical kit.

He and another officer then administer first aid to Adebowale.

One officer, known as E48, told the court: "He almost instantly broke into a sprint and I realised we were being attacked. We had very little time to deal with the threat.

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A CCTV image was released of Michael Adebolajo buying a knife set and sharpener in Argos in Lewisham

"He was coming at us."

The officer said Adebowale had been shot in the leg and stomach, and raised his arm before he was hit again.

"The next two shots shot his thumb off. The hand holding the weapon", E48 said.

He said that he and his fellow officers will try to save the lives of suspects who have been shot.

"Once the threat is neutralised we have a duty of care to all persons to save life, no matter who they are."

Paramedic Nicholas Goh said when he arrived at the scene, he realised that Fusilier Rigby was dead.

In a statement read by prosecutor Oliver Glasgow, he said the soldier had suffered "injuries not compatible with life".

"I knew the man was dead and there was nothing I could do for him," he said.

The paramedic then went to treat Adebolajo, and described him saying: "I don't want anyone to die, I just want the soldiers out of my country.

"Your Government is all wrong. I did it for my God."

Another paramedic, William Woolston, said in a statement that Adebolajo told him his name was Mujahid Abu Hamza.

The witness said the 28-year-old told him he believed in sharia law, and made repeated statements about British soldiers raping and killing women in Afghanistan.

"He kept repeating these statements over and over in slightly varied forms and didn't stop talking about this for all of the journey to King's College Hospital," the paramedic said.

Mr Woolston's colleague Stephen Berry said Adebolajo told him that "British soldiers deserved to die" for raping and killing women "in our lands".

Once Adebolajo was taken to hospital, he remained under police guard.

Police Constable Melita Vejnovic told the court he said to her: "My intention was never to harm any civilians. There were women and children around, my intention was to hurt military only. He (Fusilier Rigby) was in his kit, in his uniform, coming in and out of the barracks."

Adebolajo refused to sign a note of the statement he had made, but later dictated her a note that said: "The reason that we are fighting is because we believe in an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.

"We hope that one day Great Britain will replace those corrupt politicians with men or women who truly care about the security of their citizens by withdrawing from the affairs of Muslims including their lands."

The trial was adjourned until tomorrow.