Socialist Worker

Hundreds demand justice for victims of police brutality in north London

by Sophie Squire
Issue No. 2717

Speakers talked about the long history of police violence in the area

Speakers talked about the long history of police violence in the area (Pic: Guy Smallman)


Over 700 people gathered in Tottenham, north London, to protest against police brutality on Saturday.

They gathered outside the doors of the police station, and victims of police brutality spoke about their experiences.

Camden resident Mina Agyepong, said her son had been left “traumatised” by the police.

Her son Kai was arrested as armed police raided her home after he was seen playing with a toy gun in his garden.

“The police put my sona 12 year old—in handcuffs

“My son was criminalised in his own home. He was doing nothing but playing with his toys in his home.

“He’s also angry and I’m worried about how he’ll react to the police from now on,” she said.

Cops shut the doors to the station but police helicopters circled above the crowd.

Activists plastered the doors with posters demanding “No more police violence, no more police racism, no more police impunity.”

Grace told Socialist Worker that, “The police are scared of our unity, that’s why they shut their doors today.”

A current of anger ran through the protests as police had arrested local youth workers and raided the offices of the 4Front youth project on Friday night.

One 14 year old was arrested on suspicion of possessing cannabis and two youth workers were arrested on suspicion of obstructing an officer.

Behaviour

A further person was arrested after people gathered outside Colindale police station in protest at the police’s behaviour.

One youth worker said he and a colleague had been arrested “for doing our jobs”.

In a video that the group shared on social media video young black youth workers workers are seen dragged across the ground by the police.

They were questioning the arrest of the teenager that they say on a previous occasion was held for over 40 hours at a police station without a parent or guardian.

Ahmed, a Tottenham resident who is involved with 4Front, told Socialist Worker, “When the group tried to stop the police vans from moving, police officers showed up in large numbers.

“4Front has been in the community helping us for so long, and that’s why people are so angry. People that are trying to improve young people’s lives are being met with violence from the police.”

One of the youth workers at the organisation told the crowd, “They dragged me on the floor, and they put me in a police vana metal boxon one of the hottest days of the year.”

At one point during the protest the police handcuffed a young black man but was freed after others chanted “No justice no peace”.

Many of the speakers demanded that the police are defunded and money funnelled into the community.

Others talked about the many deaths in police custody, including Mark Duggan, whose death nine years ago sparked the London riots.

Morenike told Socialist Worker “The British police force isn’t better than the US one like people like to say. The violence is there, it’s just more undercover.

“The police here do everything to cover up their crimes. But we are saying here that we are on to you. “

The stories of police brutality by the speakers and attendees at this protest are a condemnation of a police force that is rotten to the core.

Protests must continue to demand justice for black lives taken and ruined by police racism and cop violence.


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