Independent Review Launched as Police Watchdog Probes Met Officer’s Punching of Handcuffed Man in East London

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Incident involving police officer
Incident involving police officer (Twitter)
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An event in which a Metropolitan police officer seems to have repeatedly struck a handcuffed Black individual while making an arrest in the eastern part of London has been brought to the attention of the police oversight agency.

A video that has been widely circulated on social media depicts a cluster of officers restraining the individual on the ground, while one of the officers delivers punches to the restrained individual.

The footage appears to show the officer shouting “Get off my leg” repeatedly as he continues to strike the man.

In the video footage, bystanders along the row of small shops can be heard shouting at the officer, urging him to cease his actions.

The individual under suspicion, seemingly entangled with one of the officers, emits a piercing cry amidst the interaction. Once the officer discontinues the physical actions and attempts to engage in a conversation with the individual, the latter vehemently retorts by shouting obscenities, telling the officer to “f*** off”

The Metropolitan Police later verified that the 49-year-old man, observed on Farnham Road in Romford, had been apprehended subsequent to reports of a domestic violence incident at 9:30 pm on Sunday.

Acting Chief Supt Martin Rolston, lead for policing in Havering, said: “We are aware of a video circulating on social media and recognise the concern it will cause among members of the community.

“As soon as this was brought to my attention, I asked the Directorate of Professional Standards (DPS) to review the online footage, and footage captured in the body-worn video, to look at the level of force used by one officer.

“A decision has now been taken to refer this incident to the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC).

“My officers understand that their actions will be scrutinised as they go about their work and that they will be held to account where appropriate. Any use of force must be proportionate and reasonable, and where there is any suggestion that it is not, it will be thoroughly investigated and action, including criminal proceedings, taken where necessary.

“I will be speaking to our local independent advisory groups and forums to discuss the incident and listen to their views while the DPS conduct their work.”

An IOPC spokesman: “We received a conduct referral on Monday afternoon (7 July) from the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) relating to the arrest of a man in Romford, east London, where force was used by an officer, who has struck the man several times.

“We’re aware that footage of this incident has been shared on social media. We are assessing the referral to determine whether any further action is required from us.”

The Metropolitan Police affirmed that the 49-year-old individual was taken into custody under suspicion of domestic assault (ABH), a racially aggravated public order offense, and assault on an emergency worker. This action was prompted by an incident in which an officer endured racial abuse and incurred cuts and bruises due to the individual’s resistance during the apprehension.

In addition, a 46-year-old woman was also apprehended on suspicion of a racially aggravated public order offense.

Presently, the man remains in detention, whereas the woman has been released on bail, pending the continuation of investigations.

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