France’s prosecutors on Monday launched an intentional homicide investigation in the case involving the shooting of two people early morning in the center of Paris, at the end of the victory rally for the re-election of President Emmanuel Macron, according to reports by local media.
The police opened fire on a vehicle killing two passengers after they refused to comply with their orders. The Inspectorate General of the National Police reached the spot on the Pont-Neuf bridge in central Paris and questioned the five police officials involved in the shooting, FranceInfo news reported.
The prosecution has registered a case of “attempted homicide on persons holding public authority” and seized the weapon from which a dozen cartridges were fired, killing the two suspects. The prosecution has also opened a probe against the police officer for causing “intentional violence” resulting in death.
The police have not linked the incident with the Macron’s rally and have not announced any suspected terror angle.
The incident is said to have occurred around 11.45 p.m. local time (21:45 GMT) as supporters and spectators were leaving Macron’s rally at the Champs de Mars public space. The Pont Neuf bridge is between Louvre Museum and Notre Dame cathedral and is a few km away from Champs de Mars. The area had high security in view of the election day results.
A police patrol came across a gray Volkswagen Polo that was parked with headlights in the opposite direction of the road on the bridge. As the police were approaching the car, the driver tried to move in their direction, triggering the only armed police officers to start firing to stop the car, the report said.
The prosecution has identified two deceased – a 25-year-old driver and a 31-year-old front passenger – and a 42-year-old backseat passenger who was injured during the shooting.