The lead investigator for the police inquiry into the shooting of Mark Duggan has admitted a "mistake" was made when it was announced that he had fired at officers first.

A pre-inquest hearing into the death of the 29-year-old saw Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) investigator Colin Sparrow admit the mistake, the Press Association reported.

Duggan's fatal shooting, on August 4, was the catalyst that set off the summer London riots that saw widespread violence and looting throughout the capital.

At the hearing, held at North London Coroner's Court, Michael Mansfield QC, representing Mr Duggan's family, quizzed Sparrow about the lack of accurate information released soon after the incident.

"My first question is, you appreciate the anxiety that the family have about the investigation? And you are aware at least one of the reasons is the misinformation that was broadcast at the beginning, close to the time Mark Duggan met his death. Misinformation suggesting some form of shoot-out and you accept that was a serious mistake?

"It wasn't accurate," Sparrow said, before admitting that it was "a mistake".

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Mr Mansfield went on to criticise the "complete breakdown in confidence for the investigation" felt by Mr Duggan's family, who had not received information about the traqjectory of the bullet that killed him.

Initial reports released after the shooting concluded that Mtr Duggan fired on police first, but that was later disproved by ballistic tests.

A gun which had been linked to Mr Duggan was found 14 feet away, on the other side of a fence. Mr Mansfield said that witnesses claimed to have seen an officer throw the gun away. None of Mr Duggan's blood, DNA or fingerprints was found on the gun.

Mr Duggan, a suspected gangster, was killed by a single gunshot wound to the chest when officers stopped the minicab he was travelling in on Aug 4.

A peaceful march was held two days later in protest over the lack of information given to the father of four's family. Soon afterwards disorder spread throughout London, Manchester, Liverpool and Birmingham.