Wasilewska and Kalucka v. Poland (Applications nos. 28975/04 and 33406/04)

A selection of key paragraph(s) can be found below the document.

52. The Court accepts that the use of weapons could be regarded as absolutely necessary and justified under paragraph 2 of Article 2 of the Convention as long as those participating in the police operation could be considered as having honestly believed that a police officer had been exposed to a clear and immediate danger. In the circumstances of the instant case it could be argued that such danger existed, and the use of firearms could be regarded as absolutely necessary, before the suspects’ car had passed the police officer.

53. However, in the present case the majority of the shots were fired at the escaping vehicle, once it had passed the police officer who had been allegedly hit by it. At that moment there had been no direct danger to the police officer and the only intention of the police officers had been to prevent the escape of the suspects.

57. Having regard to the circumstances as analysed above the Court considers that the manner in which the police responded and the degree of force used cannot be considered to have been strictly proportionate to the aim of preventing Mr Kałucki’s escape and arresting him or averting the perceived threat posed by him. Moreover, the operation was not planned so as to reduce to a minimum recourse to lethal force.


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