It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.
Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.
Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.
(visit the link for the full news article)
The Metropolitan Police faced fresh allegations of brutality last night after it emerged that a man who died at the G20 protests may have been attacked by riot police three times.
Ian Tomlinson was walking home from work when he was hit and pushed over by an officer in an apparently unprovoked attack. Minutes later the 47-year-old lay dying on a London street.
Last night, as it was revealed that the police officer concerned had come forward one week after the events, shocking new claims emerged that the violence meted out to Mr Tomlinson was even more severe than first thought.
There are circumstances under which the police might need to use reasonable force to subdue political demonstrations that turn violent. But what is so damning about the video footage that has emerged from last week's G20 protests in London is that there is nothing in the slightest bit reasonable about the force that was used against Ian Tomlinson.
Almost as disturbing as the assault itself was the misleading response of the police when they were first probed on the incident. They made no mention of contact between Mr Tomlinson and their officers before he collapsed and briefed that other protesters had impeded police medics in their efforts to help him. It was only when this new footage emerged that the police admitted they might have a case to answer.
As for their attempts to present their involvement as merely shielding Mr Tomlinson from an angry mob, this was reminiscent of the false information circulated in the wake of the mistaken shooting of Jean Charles de Menezes in London in 2005. The public were told on that occasion that Mr Menezes' behaviour and clothing had given them cause for suspicion. These lies were exposed by CCTV footage from Stockwell Underground station, just as the police's account this week has crumbled in the light of these latest images.
The Independent Police Complaints Commission has launched an inquiry into the apparent assault on Mr Tomlinson and will decide whether charges should be brought against officers. But this terrible case reflects deeper problems in the police, the most glaring of which is an entrenched culture of unaccountability.
Ms Branthwaite told this newspaper how she witnessed two initial attacks further up the street as Scotland Yard's riot police swarmed the area.
"The dog handlers [believed to be City of London Police] were just starting to sweep the street and form a police line when Ian Tomlinson arrived. I saw a riot police officer charge him from behind and propel himself forward with his body weight," she said.
"Mr Tomlinson was on the ground and I saw him [the policeman] stand over him with a baton, hitting him twice. He was completely taken by surprise. He didn't know what hit him."