Queen Elizabeth II nearly died from an assassin's bullet and it's the report that New Zealand didn't want the public to know about, this according to a new chilling account.
According to a Jan. 13 Daily Mail report, the harrowing incident allegedly took place in 1981, based on accounts from an attorney and member of law enforcement. Information on the Queen of England's assassination attempt has supposedly been kept under wraps until now. Sources say the government of New Zealand hatched plans to bury the details of the shooting over threats of global embarrassment.
Queen Elizabeth attended a parade in her honor during a trip to the country decades ago. While she waved to throngs of people gathered at the reception, Christopher John Lewis, 17-years-old at the time, aimed his .22-caliber rifle at the British monarch and fired as she exited a limousine. The Stuff website published a five-part series on Lewis' life titled, "The Snowman and The Queen."
Luckily, the South Island native with strawberry blonde hair missed his intended target; the errant shot went past her head. The crowd was momentarily distracted by the sound, but otherwise unaware that an attempt on Queen Elizabeth's life had just taken place. Later, police said the sound of "gunfire" was merely a firecracker.
Prime Minister Robert Muldoon was the leader of the National Party during the alleged shooting. Reportedly, he had fears that the royal family would not visit the country ever again if others learned about the near miss.The would-be assassin apparently had an obsession with the queen. New Zealand police learned about his plans to kill the entire clan of the British royals. Two years after his failed attempt to kill Queen Elizabeth, Lewis tried breaking out of a psychiatric facility to kill Princess Diana and Prince Charles, who were visiting New Zealand at the time. Lewis has been since labeled a "terrorist." Based on reports, police took part in a cover-up on fears that the country could suffer embarrassment on a global scale if news leaked that Elizabeth was the target of an assassination and officials came close to losing a visiting dignitary on their soil. Tom Lewis worked as a police officer in Dunedin at the time the attempted murder of Queen Elizabeth took place. It's unclear why he is coming forward now to discuss crime.
"You will never get a true file on that. It was reactivated, regurgitated, bits pulled off it, other false bits put on."As part of the alleged cover-up, police destroyed the teen's statement about his plans to kill the queen during her visit. Moreover, officials declined to charge him with treason, as it would likely alert the media about the incident and cause a political crisis. Insiders said an order came down from "up top" to bury the details of the incident and forgo plans to move ahead with a death penalty case, as it would draw widespread attention. According to Murray Hanan, the teen's lawyer at the time of the attempted assassination of Queen Elizabeth, the case was the focus of deep consternation.
"The fact an attempted assassination of the Queen had taken place in New Zealand... it was too politically hot to handle. I think the government took the view that he is a bit nutty and has had a hard upbringing, so it won't be too harsh."In his autobiography, Last Words, the alleged assassin wrote how several men visited him while he was being held for interrogation. There, they warned him to remain tight-lipped about his plans to kill the queen, saying he would suffer a fate "worse than death" if he opened up to the press. Lewis talked about how he was a patsy and coerced into taking part in plans to assassinate Elizabeth. He expressed fear about an Englishman only known to him as "The Snowman," who forced him into the conspiracy to kill the monarch.
Lewis later died in an Auckland jail from an apparent suicide while awaiting trial for unrelated offenses. He was 33.