Home London News Met under investigation after ‘officer put knee on neck of black schoolboy’

Met under investigation after ‘officer put knee on neck of black schoolboy’

by
Metropolitan Police

An inquiry has been launched following the arrest of a young person in Central London by Metropolitan Police officers. The force has said publicly that a witness filed a complaint stating that an officer ‘put their knee’ on the suspect’s neck.

Officers detained a young person on Bryanston Street in Westminster at 7 p.m. on Thursday, April 20. He was subsequently brought into the station and released on bail awaiting further investigation.

The arrest, which was captured on video by onlookers, has raised widespread concern. Nava Adé, a singer-songwriter and producer, tweeted on Saturday (April 22):

“My nephew was on his way home from school and was randomly targeted by the police. When he asked why they wrestled him to the ground and put their knee on his neck. Metropolitan Police, the way you target black children is DISGUSTING! You could have killed him!

“It’s sad that I have to make these disclaimers but my nephew is 16, literally the sweetest and most gentle person you will ever meet. He is not affiliated with any gangs or been in any sort of trouble in his life! He’s just a child that has suffered in the hands of the Met.

“When the officers in the video were asked why did they stop him, they said they couldn’t say yet. You can hear my nephew saying he didn’t want to go with them because he was scared, but they took him in and drove around in the van for hours! Met police, that’s kidnapping.

“My cousin (his mum) only found out where he might have been via this video. How can you not notify a parent of their child’s whereabouts is beyond me! Met police, the racial profiling and adultification of black boys is shocking. My nephew is at home traumatised, this is exactly how George Floyd died – by asphyxiation due to the knee on his neck and this is the force you felt was ok for an innocent child.”

Met step on black schoolboy's neck
Bryanston Street, Westminster

A spokesperson for the Met tweeted in response: “We are aware of a video posted on social media showing part of an incident involving the arrest of a male in Bryanston Street, Westminster. This occurred on Thursday, April 20 at around 7pm. The male was taken into custody and bailed to return pending further enquiries.”

The complaint is being investigated by its Directorate of Professional Standards. They said: “We are aware of a video posted on social media showing part of an incident involving the arrest of a male in Bryanston Street, Westminster on Thursday, April 20 at around 7pm. The male was taken into custody and bailed to return pending further enquiries.

“A public complaint has been made in relation to the arrest which means we are unable to discuss the matter in any further detail at present. The complaint is being investigated by the Directorate of Professional Standards. As part of this investigation, all available footage will be viewed, including video captured by officers’ body worn cameras.”

College of Policing guidance includes advice on officers’ use of force. It reads: “Would the use of force have a lawful objective (e.g. the prevention of injury to others or damage to property, or the effecting of a lawful arrest) and, if so, how immediate and grave is the threat posed?

“Are there any means, short of the use of force, capable of attaining the lawful objective identified? Having regard to the nature and gravity of the threat, and the potential for adverse consequences to arise from the use of force (including the risk of escalation and the exposure of others to harm), what is the minimum level of force required to attain the objective identified, and would the use of that level of force be proportionate or excessive?

“A police officer asking each of these three questions, and acting according to the answers, will be likely to identify the correct considerations governing the use of force, and therefore to be acting lawfully.”

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