More G20 police brutality revealed
By politics.co.uk staff
A new video showing what appears to be an unprovoked police attack at this month’s G20 protests has been released to the public.
The video shows a policeman seemingly slapping a woman with the back of his hand before removing his baton and hitting her across the legs.
The Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) announced this afternoon it would be investigating the incident.
The attack took place on April 2nd, a day after the main protests, as demonstrators gathered to pay tribute to Iam Tomlinson.
Announcing the investigation, IPCC deputy chair Deborah Glass said: “I have taken this decision bearing in mind the death of Ian Tomlinson and the volume of complaints made by the public about the actions and tactics of the police service during the policing of the G20 demonstrations.”
The IPCC told the press the woman featured in the video had not been contact with them.
“We understand the woman, and her sister, have both spoken to the media. It is important to the investigation that she contacts the IPCC so that our investigators can speak to her. I would urge her to call 020 7166-3000 and ask to speak to the G20 YouTube investigation team,” Ms Class said.
The officer was suspended just hours after the video came to light.
Political condemnation was equally swift.
“I, and everyone who would have seen the fottage, would be concerned by it,” said Keith Vaz, chairman of the Home Affairs Committee.
“These are highly stressful circumstances, but given what we have seen this was unacceptable bahviour.”
The Liberal Democrats have suggested problems in the police force may now be systemic, and have called for an inquiry.
“The fact that this video shows another example of an officer with his number obscured assaulting a member of the public indicates that there is a systematic problem here, not just a series of individual acts of misconduct,” said David Howarth, the party’s justice spokesman.
“The question is on my mind whether the police are using a some kind of ‘designated hitter’ system.”
Jenny Jones, home affairs spokesperson for the Green party and a member of the Metropolitan Police Authority called on the Met to ensure police no longer snatch protestors’ cameras and mobile phones at protests.
“This new video footage confirms what many of us knew, that the assault on Ian Thomlinson was far from being an isolated incident during the G20 protest,” she said today.
“The use of kettling has to be curtailed and all officers seen acting unprofessionally must be traced and disciplined. Any attempt to avoid accountability by hiding police uniform numbers, destroying video images, or collusion over statements, must be severely dealt with.”
The video prompted immediate statements from the police.
A spokesperson for the Met said: “Once we were notified of this footage by a media agency this afternoon we began to take steps to identify this officer and are currently in the process of referring the incident to the IPCC.
“Every officer is accountable under law, and fully aware of the scrutiny that their actions can be held open to.
“The decision to use force is made by the individual police officer, and they must account for that.”
The new video follows footage of an attack on Ian Tomlinson, a newspaper seller making his way home during the G20 protests who died of a heart attack moments after being hit by police.