A coroner has rejected a request from reporters for the release of tapes recorded by fugitive gunman Raoul Moat while he was on the run from police.
The four-week inquest into the death of the former Newcastle doorman who shot himself after a standoff with police is currently in its third week at Newcastle Crown Court.
He recorded the four-hour dictaphone tape while on the run in 2010 after shooting dead karate instructor Chris Brown and maiming his ex-girlfriend Samantha Stobbart.
A request from reporters covering the inquest for the release of the tapes was yesterday turned down by coroner David Mitford.
Newcastle Evening Chronicle reporter Alistair Craig, who has been tweeting live from the court since the inquest began branded the coroner ‘wary of the press’.
Alistair said in a Tweet: “David Mitford – in my opinion – very wary of the press and this influences his decisions on what to release..”
This was followed shortly afterwards by a further Tweet saying: “Word is he’s impressed by Ev Chron and Journal coverage – very accurate and fair.”
In 2010 it was widely reported in the national press that the tapes contained Raoul Moat ranting about his grudge with the police and his personal troubles.
He is claimed to have said to have been upset with newspaper reports about his private life and said he was ‘no Derrick Bird’
While on the run the gunman shot and blinded Northumbria Police traffic officer PC David Rathband, before shooting himself in the head following a six hour stand-off with police, during which he was fired at with Taser guns.
The jury will decide whether Taser rounds fired from experimental weapons may have caused Raoul Moat’s death.