British forensics team to look into police killing of tourist

Protesters at a demo in support of Sammy Baker in 2021. Photo: Charles M Vella / SOPA Images/Sipa USA

A British forensic research group is looking into the death of a 23-year-old German man who was shot dead by police in 2020. 

The parents of Sammy Baker blame Amsterdam police for the death of their son, who was described as being in a ‘confused state’ when he was killed in the garden of a housing complex almost three years ago. 

Forensic Architecture says it aims to look critically at the Dutch state’s explanation for Baker’s death, the Volkskrant reported on Friday afternoon. This will include examining a 3D model of the garden where Baker was shot dead and a minute-to-minute reconstruction of what happened on August 13, 2020. 

The company has previously been involved in a string of high-profile cases, including uncovering the origins of the fire at the Moria refugee camp in Greece and the Pylos shipwreck in June this year. 

“We get in far more requests for help than we can deal with, but in this case we saw enough to get our teeth into,’ spokesman Bob Trafford told the paper. “The police officers had to take their decisions in a split second. The question is were they the right ones?”

Baker was in Amsterdam to celebrate his birthday when he was killed. The public prosecution department ruled that police officers acted out of necessity because Baker was seriously under the influence of drugs and began to try to stab one of them as they attempted to subdue him.

City police chief Frank Paauw later admitted there was no forensic evidence that Baker had actually stabbed an officer as he had claimed.

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