Matt Ratana shooting: Man arrested on suspicion of supplying firearm over police officer's death

27 September 2020, 14:08 | Updated: 27 September 2020, 15:58

A man has been arrested on suspicion of supplying a firearm following the fatal shooting of a police officer in a custody suite.

Sergeant Matt Ratana died in hospital after being shot at Croydon Custody Centre in south London in the early hours of Friday.

The arrest took place in Norwich around 2am on Sunday and the suspect is currently being detained at a south London police station.

Meanwhile, a 23-year-old man suspected of the shooting remains in a critical condition in hospital and officers investigating the alleged murder say they have not yet been able to speak to him.

Sgt Ratana, 54, was allegedly attacked by the man who was handcuffed and who investigators say then shot himself.

No police firearms were fired and the case is not being treated as terror-related.

Friends and teammates of the officer, who was a popular head coach at East Grinstead Rugby Club, have gathered in tribute to him.

There were two periods of silence - for junior and senior members - and the club flag was flown alongside the New Zealand flag and the All Blacks rugby team flag to honour Sgt Ratana's roots.

Ryan Morlen, the club's assistant head coach, said the news of his death would "take time to process".

He said: "It's tough really with the loss of Matt, he's an irreplaceable figure. The club here, from juniors, seniors, to the women's team, they're going to really miss Matt.

"As a community, he brought a lot of things together. I spoke to Matt every single day... and there are thousands of people out there that really looked up to him."

Elsewhere, Metropolitan Police Commissioner Dame Cressida Dick, Home Secretary Priti Patel and London Mayor Sadiq Khan have attended a wreath-laying ceremony on National Police Memorial Day.

Speaking at the National Police Memorial in central London, Dame Cressida described Sgt Ratana as an "extraordinary person", adding: "He had a wonderful personality and he was very good at his job."

She said his death brings home the challenges of police work.

She said: "If some good can come out of this terrible incident... it would be that more people can understand a little bit about the challenges of police work.

"And to see us police as who we are - human beings, going to work to help people, to support people and to protect people.

"Matt was the epitome of that."

On Saturday, four locations were searched by officers investigating Sgt Ratana's death:

  • The custody centre where the shooting occurred
  • An area of London Road in Pollards Hill, south London, where the suspect for the shooting was initially arrested
  • An address in Southbrook Road, Norbury
  • An address in Park Road, Banstead, Surrey

On Sunday, police said searches and forensic examination of the scene in Pollards Hill have ended.