Socialist Worker

Surge of anger after cops attack a black teenager

by Tomáš Tengely-Evans
Issue No. 2735

School students led a protests through the streets in the wake of the attack

School students led a protests through the streets in the wake of the attack (Pic: Guy Smallman)


The cops are facing a backlash after a violent assault on a black teenager in north London last week. 

Video footage appears to show an officer punching a black teenager in the head as the young man’s body is pressed up against a car.

The alleged attack took place ­outside Park View school in Tottenham last Tuesday.

Around 100 people joined an angry march to Tottenham police station last Friday, chanting, “No ­justice, no peace, no racist police,” and, “UK’s not innocent.” 

Shanea from 4Front Project youth organisation told the angry crowd, “This is not a one off experience. Our young black brothers are brutalised by the police very single day.”

She spoke about the ­“nonsense, the brutality, and the traumatic ­experiences that don’t get caught on camera”. 

The protest was called by local anti-racist activists, including the Black Lives Matter Movement. Gary McFarlane from the group slammed the cops for being beyond ­“democratic control”.

The Metropolitan Police said that four teenagers, all aged 16, were arrested and that police sustained injuries.

Welfare

A statement from the Met said, “A criminal investigation is under way to ascertain how the officers received their injuries and welfare support is being provided to them.” 

Ken Hinds, chair of the Haringey Independent Stop and Search Monitoring Group, slammed the response from the cops. “The police statement is insulting and ­disrespectful,” he said.

“The borough commander stated that the video footage showed a snap shot in time without the wider context. The wider context is that the police harassed four black ­schoolchildren as they went to ­collect their GCSE certificates from Park View School. 

Stop and search shows reality of cops’ racism
Stop and search shows reality of cops’ racism
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“They had not seen each other for quite some time so they were just catching up and hanging out.

“The police attempted to stop and search one of the children ­without any reasonable suspicion. The video footage then showed a police officer punching one of the children repeatedly.”

Hinds added, “The police ­statement alleged that the ­schoolchildren caused injuries to the officers and an investigation was underway to find out how this happened. 

“This is complete nonsense. How is it ever possible for four unarmed schoolchildren to cause injuries to armed police officers?”

The police’s pet watchdog, the IOPC, has now opened an ­investigation into the incident. 

A statement from Haringey Stand Up To Racism (SUTR), which supported the protest, has issued list of demands on the police.

They include dropping “all charges,” an “unreserved apology to the child who was punched on the head” and suspension of “all officers involved in the incident immediately”. 

The assault is another sign of how Britain’s institutionally racist police force targets black people. 


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