Tag Archives: City of London Police

Half Bakered at The Shard…

Occupy The Shard posterSo, the other day the owners (that would be various members of the Qatari royal family) of the Shard, a boutique towerblock in Central London notable for its numerous empty luxury apartments, initiated pre-emptive legal action against erstwhile anarchist Ian Bone (and that ever-popular beat combo ‘persons unknown’).

Why? Because the in-his-seventies-but-still-fuckin’-angry Class War founder called for protests against the Shard. He sees it as an example of the gilded skyscrapers increasingly dominating the London skyline, often empty of any actual residents, like enormous rich men’s follies, spunking steel-and-crystal tumescences contemptuously drawing shade over the capital’s poorer denizens. Turns out them vastly wealthy Qatari royal dudes do not have a sense of humour when it comes to shouty anarchists threatening to picket their valuable, shiny metropolitan real estate. Turns out they take it really fucking seriously, in fact.

Apart from the ridiculousness of them thinking even for a minute that they were going to win a propaganda war against Bone (IAN. FUCKING. BONE.), there were some interesting titbits which emerged from news stories about the injunction. Interesting titbits which, one might say, prove somewhat instructive at a time when elsewhere, for example, the judge running the supposedly independent Undercover Policing Inquiry has suggested giving ex-spycops anonymity on the frankly bizarre grounds that married men don’t tell lies; the Scottish Justice Minister has decided not to have a Scottish spycops inquiry because the HMICS police investigation of undercover policing has found no evidence of malfeasance (despite self-limiting its scope to after the Mark Kennedy shitstorm which blew the whole thing wide open); and top Scots cop Phil Gormley (himself sporran-deep in shady spycops shenanigans thanks to his time RUNNING SPECIAL BRANCH) deciding to take the I’m-leaving-before-you-sack-me-oh-is-that-my-pension-thank-you-very-much route to retirement, conveniently sidestepping the numerous investigations into his behaviour.

So anyway, those titbits. First off, the whole harassment-of-Bone shebang was organised by the Shard’s security manager, one André Frank Baker. He contracted a private security company, VSG, to compile a dossier on The Most Dangerous Man In Britain in order to put it before the court as evidence of the threat he and his unruly kind present to innocent empty multi-million pound flats. Currently Team Shard is looking to sting Bone for £525 for the privilege of being injuncted, with that figure only likely to rise.

In case you were wondering why that security manager’s name is familiar, it’s because he’s an ex-Met cop who over the years has popped up everywhere, a contemporary of such luminaries as John Yates (latterly an advisor to the democracy demonstration-crushing Bahraini police) and Bob ‘No Plainclothes Cops Here Honest Guv’ Broadhurst. After not doing very well in the Daniel Morgan or Milly Dowler murder inquiries, ‘Andy’ shifted over to the second-raters of SOCA, and then onto the anti-kiddie porn unit CEOP.

After retirement his attempts at becoming a self-employed security consultant didn’t go so well. How he landed the cushy job of security chief at the Shard isn’t exactly clear, but it wouldn’t be any stranger than career mediocrity Sid Nicholson bagging the post of Head of Security for McDonald’s UK back in the 80s after an unillustrious time spent in the boroughs.

André Baker: a man without dignity?

It helps that despite being turned over by Sun and NOTW hacks during the Dowler investigation *coff* *phonehacking* Baker later demonstrated his absolute lack of dignity by praising the Currant Bun, despite him being at (and, indeed, requesting) that awkward meeting between Morgan inquiry detective Dave Cook and Murdoch’s representative on Earth, Rebekah Wade, brokered by Slippery Dick Fedorcio, when Wade tried to deny that News Corp had Cook and his wife Jacqui Hames under surveillance by Southern Investigations-aligned journalists. Zing!

As for the private security company he commissioned the risk assessment of Bone from, VSG, that was a penny-ante little firm of shopping centre woodentops before it teamed up with – wait for it – a catering company. Always more geared towards static guarding than sophisticated investigative work, in 2016 it was boasting how it had secured a contract to operate the national business-facing counter terrorism information campaign Project Griffin… Which is convenient, seeing as how VSG’s head of counter terrorism Ian Mansfield was, err, in charge of Project Griffin whilst at the City of London Police right up until he left for a cushy private sector job!

So what sort of high grade intel did the failed detective-hired mall cop company serve up on Bone?

The VSG report described Class War as “a small but passionate group of leftwing, pro-anarchy activists with a long and proven history of campaigning against ‘the elite’ and other entities associated with wealth or perceived social injustice”.

The report advised the Shard’s owners that if Bone’s protest was allowed to take place it could endure for months and “attract widespread media coverage”. It also warned that activists could use “pyrotechnics and large, offensive banners of a derogatory nature”…

“Class War is a far-left, pro-anarchy, UK-based pseudo-political party, originally borne out of a newspaper established in 1982. The group opposes the ‘ruling elite’ for their exploitation of the poor and the disadvantaged and have recently been involved in campaigns against the demolition of social housing in London to make way for the construction of luxury housing, as well as campaigns against inequality and austerity. Class War vocally supports, and engages in, civil disobedience, violence and anarchy as acceptable methods of pursuing their objectives.”

Wow. Mind blowing – truly exceptional levels of wiki fu going on there.

Still, at least the obscenely rich Shard barons are being cost money. But perhaps VSG should bring on some fresh new talent to reenergise the company.

I hear Phil Gormley is available.

 

Getting away with murder – 1,433 deaths in police hands since 1990 and not a single cop convicted

It’s not just one fat-fingered thug from Carshalton who has got away with murder here – besides Simon Harwood there are others with blood-stained hands involved in the needless death of Ian Tomlinson, commissioners of crimes of omission, intent, neglect, inaction and untruthfulness.

Alex Robertson, Steve Discombe, Alan Palfrey, Andrew Moore, Kerry Smith, Nick Jackson, Jon Bish, Trevor Stevens, Clive Wilkinson, Colin Nye, Carl Small, Ryan Cowlin, Andrew Massey and others there at the scene.

Timothy Williams, Mike Bowron, Paul Stephenson, Bob Broadhurst, Anthony Crampton and others who set the tone either for unchecked brutality or for shameless cover-up.

All share in the culpability of the acts that led to the death of Ian Tomlinson, and in the acts that prevented the timely and accurate investigation of the circumstances of his death.

All uniformed police officers.

All off scott-free.

And as the statistics compiled month after month, year after year by INQUEST – a charity working with the families of those who die from contact with the police – show, the snuffing out of Ian Tomlinson’s life at the feet of officers who batoned him, set attack dogs on him, threw him to the ground without a thought for his welfare, his health, is sadly, enragingly, all too common.

1,433 deaths across England and Wales since 1990. 1,433 families bereaved.

ONE THOUSAND, FOUR HUNDRED, AND THIRTY-THREE LIVES SNATCHED EARLY.

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Every dot, a life.

Every dot, justice denied.

1,433 deaths in police hands, and not a single police officer convicted.

RIP Ian Tomlinson. Rest in Peace all victims of police violence.

JUSTICE? Carshalton killer cop PC Simon Harwood acquitted

MURDERING

BASTARD

Ian Tomlinson death cop PC Simon Harwood to stand trial for manslaughter

So, PC Simon Harwood – the TSG officer who batoned and shoved Ian Tomlinson in a manner which three pathologists concluded significantly contributed to his death – is to face trial for manslaughter in October.

It looks like those who trained and directed Harwood – as well as hundreds, thousands of other police deployed to control the citizenry with whatever level of physical force they see fit – have got away with it.

For now.

PC Simon Harwood due to give evidence at inquest into Ian Tomlinson’s G20 death at 2pm

He’s in the room now, being shown the layout. Not such a tough man without his Action Man gear.

His TSG boss, Inspector Tim Williams, was giving evidence this morning. Harwood should be giving evidence from 2pm this afternoon.

G20 police witnesses to fatal Ian Tomlinson assault – UPDATE

Two years ago, when this project began ten days after Ian Tomlinson died at the hands of PC Harwood of the Territorial Support Group under the noses of the Forward Intelligence Teams and others, it it looked like it was going to be another brushed-under-the-carpet death-by-police-contact.

Here we are now two years on, and are we any closer to justice? How much more heartache for the Tomlinson family? Will Smiley Culture’s family have to endure the same agony as they try to get at the truth?

One thing we do know, and that’s that the police, collectively and as individuals, have singularly failed to be as candid or as honest as they could have been from the very beginning. Everything has been prised from them, not volunteered by them.

So we must continue prising; prising and prising until every mailed fist is broken open.

Accordingly here is the updated list of police witnesses to the deadly assault on Ian Tomlinson:

A = PC Simon Harwood, (4TSG, Met – Aitken Road, Catford, driver, U4103)

T1 = PC Andrew Moore (L2, Met – Fulham, driver, FHxxx)
T2 = PC Kerry Smith (L2, Met – Fulham, driver, FH521)
T3 = PC Nicholas Jackson (L2, Met – Fulham, driver, FH268)

D1 = PC Jon Bish (City of London, dog handler, CP807, same serial as PC Stevens) & Max the black & tan German Shepherd
D2 = PC Trevor Stevens (City of London, dog handler, ???, same serial as PC Bish) & Finn the black German Shepherd
D3 = PC unknown (City of London, dog handler, CP788)
D4 = PC Clive Wilkinson? (City of London, dog handler, ???)
D5 = PC unknown (City of London, dog handler, A712)

F1 = PC Alan Palfrey (Forward Intelligence Team, Met – Camden, EK127)
F2 = PC Steve Discombe (POIU/CO11/Forward Intelligence Team, Met, CO2558)
F3 = unknown (FIT)
F4 = unknown (FIT)
F5 = PC R Cowlin (POIU/CO11/Forward Intelligence Team, Met, CO5466)

C1 = unknown (City of London, 204)

U1 = unknown (City of London, possibly PS Timothy Slade, superior of Bish & Stevens?)
U2 = unknown (possibly not a cop)
U3 = unknown (possibly not a cop)

Pictures and further updates to follow.

[Edited 24/1/12 to add small details based on rereading inquest transcripts]

Tomlinson Inquest – Day 6: PC Simon Harwood to give evidence

Today is the day PC Simon Harwood is due to give evidence for the first time at the Coroner’s Inquest into the death of Ian Tomlinson on April Fool’s Day two years back. According to the court timetable, his testimony may overrun into tomorrow.

He will be preceded by Inspector Timothy Williams, his serial commander at 4TSG.

Tomlinson Inquest – Day 5: Two years on from the killing of Ian Tomlinson

Today is both the second anniversary of the death of Ian Tomlinson at the hands of the police, and the fifth day of the Coroner’s Inquest into that death. The end of a life, and the end of a week of evidence.

Thoughts and love to the whole Tomlinson family.

Not FIT for purpose? Police ‘Forward Intelligence Team’ implicated in student protest fit-up

Remember the Forward Intelligence Teams? Well, camera-wielding cops are back in the news again, this time in relation to the policing of the anti-cuts and student protests that exploded across the country at the end of last year. It seems that at least one FIT officer – according to the London Evening Standard – has been implicated in a shameless attempt to fit up a protester on false charges at the ‘DayX3’ protest on 9 December.

Unfortunately for the police involved it seems that the FIT cop was wired for sound and, after catching a young protester who had “breached a police cordon”, that officer was apparently recorded as he “conspired to falsely arrest the 20-year-old” with his colleagues. The arrestee sustained a broken tooth in the arrest. The circumstances are now being investigated by the Independent Police Complaints Commission.

You may remember that the FIT has history with the IPCC. Experienced FIT cops, including PC Alan Palfrey from Camden, PC Steve Discombe and others, witnessed the deadly assault on Ian Tomlinson by riot cop PC Simon Harwood at the 2009 G20 protests, but failed to come forward and give evidence until long after the original police narrative (‘a tragic collapse/police under hail of missiles’) had been discredited. Their unwillingness to come forward helped stymy attempts to properly investigate the circumstances of Mr Tomlinson’s death, and Harwood – a veteran on the Territorial Support Group – was able to avoid justice as the clock ran down in his favour. The Crown Prosecution Service announced in July 2010 that no charges would be brought against Harwood.

So just what legitimate purpose do the FITs serve? We have seen, as with the Tomlinson case, that these so-called experts in political protest are not actually very good at identifying ‘domestic extremists‘ (as their bosses in the publicly unaccountable National Public Order Information Unit like to call any protesters they don’t like – which boils down to anyone involved in effective activism) – otherwise why would they point out a luckless bystander like Ian Tomlinson for TSG special treatment?

We have also seen FIT officers direct violent attacks on activists when they question why some cops are not wearing their identifying numbers in order to have them photographed against their will, even when they knew full well who they were, in a manner consistent not with any desire to maintain public order or to prevent crime, but to embarrass, humiliate or otherwise harm recalcitrant protesters.

And now we appear to have FIT cops directly involved in brazen attempts to subvert the law, and possibly even to assault those they do not like.

But then should we expect anything else? The FITs are police units tasked with ‘harassment policing’ – identifying, surveilling, folllowing and hassling persons of interest in a range of fields, be it in relation to football fans, antisocial behaviour on housing estates or political protest. Their targets might never have committed an offence; but then that is the point – this is, after all, harassment policing, in which the message is loud and clear: if you come onto our radar, we will do our best to intimidate you, scare you, threaten you.

No, the reason the FIT are tolerated, nurtured, supported by the police is clear – to make life uncomfortable for anyone who challenges the status quo, to grind down those who fight against injustices and inequalities (by means legal or otherwise), and to dissuade others from taking action by illustrating just how unpleasant it can be. It’s education in action: pour encourager les autres.

RIP Ian Tomlinson – killed by British police, one year ago today

Dead one whole year, and no police officer facing charges.

Transcript of Newsnight discussion about the TSG and policing of G20, 7/7/9

On BBC2’s Newsnight yesterday there was an interesting report by Richard Watson looking at the involvement of the Territorial Support Group (TSG) in the policing of the G20 protests in light of the high level of complaints against its officers and the HMIC’s report, which came out on Monday.

There then followed a studio discussion about the points raised, which was all the more interesting for the involvement of Keith Vaz MP, who chairs the Home Affairs Committee, which published its own report into the policing of the G20 protests a week earlier.

Neither the HMIC nor the HAC reports dwelt on the involvement of TSG officers in much of the most violent incidents, such as the fatal assault on Ian Tomlinson by a TSG constable (who had apparently resigned from the police previously over allegations of violence, before rejoining with no investigation), the ‘Fisher hitter’ TSG sergeant, or the violent clearance of the peaceful Climate Camp by massed ranks of the TSG.

Indeed, in the Newsnight discussion it quickly becomes apparent that Keith Vaz does not seem to have realised that the highly experienced, well-trained public order specialists of the TSG had been on the frontline throughout the policing of G20. Lest we forget, his Committee found that ‘inexperienced’ and ‘untrained’ officers on the frontline had been a major contributing factor of the many problems.

I find his lack of awareness regarding the involvement and presence on the frontline at G20 of the TSG rather astounding. On the day the HAC report came out, I wrote to Keith Vaz with my concerns that his Committee’s report appeared to overlook the integral involvement of specialist units such as the TSG, the Forward Intelligence Teams, and the City of London Police dog units at each of the most controversial contact points. I also pointed out that the commanding officers both on the ground and directing the operation from headquarters were experienced in public order matters, and named them.

The next day I received a reply from a representative of the HAC which expressed the view that the Committee had not been able to comment specifically on matters which may be subject to court proceedings. However, it was clearly stated that the Committee might further look into specialist police units such as these in the future.

So, can we expect Commander Bob Broadhurst and other senior Met officers to be dragged back before the Committee to explain just why they gave such a plainly inaccurate picture? Only time will tell.

In the meantime, in case you missed Newsnight, you can (if you are in the UK) still catch it on the iPlayer until late next Tuesday night (the segment begins at around 14mins into the programme).

The audio of the report on the TSG and subsequent studio discussion is also available here. A full transcript of the studio discussion (which begins at around 6mins45s into the audio clip) is below.

Transcript of Newsnight studio discussion on TSG, 7/7/9

  • EM = Emily Maitlis, Newsnight presenter hosting the discussion
  • BP = Brian Paddick, former Deputy Assistant Commissioner, Metropolitan Police, and onetime LibDem candidate for London Mayor
  • JJ = Jenny Jones MLA, Green Party member of the Metropolitan Police Authority
  • KV = Keith Vaz MP, chairman of the House of Commons Home Affairs Committee

EM: Now joining me in the studio Brian Paddick, a former deputy assistant commissioner in the Met; Jenny Jones, who’s a member of the Metropolitan Police Authority; the MP Keith Vaz, chairman of the Home Affairs Select Committee, which also recently released a report into G20 policing, welcome to all, thanks for coming.

Brian Paddick, you were in charge of south east Territorial Support Group in your time, does what you’ve heard here this evening surprise you?

BP: Well, it’s a great concern of mine because it appears to be history repeating itself. The Special Patrol Group, the predecessor of the Territorial Support Group, which was disbanded when Blair Peach was killed in a demonstration in 1979, started out as a very professional outfit, they were the elite of the Metropolitan Police, and gradually the gang mentality took over, and in the end they had to be disbanded.

What I am very concerned about is the Territorial Support Group – again, the elite, um, took very great pride in their appearance, their fitness – could be showing signs of going the same way as the Special Patrol Group.

EM: But you think you know it wasn’t like this under your command? How well did you know it?

BP: It certainly wasn’t like that under my command, and I went out with the officers, on patrol, and it was a very different situation in those days. But the alarming thing is, one of the things that young man said, about being hit with the hat, one of the traditional TSG punishments amongst officers is a ‘hatting’, which is to hit a fellow officer with hats. So that story has a very sinister ring of truth about it.

EM: Jenny Jones, this didn’t just happen overnight, this doesn’t even reflect what happened in the G20…

JJ: I think that probably there is a much wider problem, I think the TSG has deep problems about the sort of robust policing they are trained for. But I think also, I’ve heard senior officers for example, say things like, they ‘differentiate between things like innocent people and protesters’, as if a protester cannot be an innocent person; now to me that suggests there is a deep thought process, and they can’t understand the real function of protest, and that it can be utterly peaceful.

EM: Keith Vaz, isn’t it extraordinary that we’ve had a whole report on the G20 and the policing of it, and barely a mention of this controversial group?

KV: Well, I’m very disappointed with what I’ve just seen on your programme. The fact is I think this is a very strong report, it’s very critical of certain aspects of what the police did during G20, and it very much echoes what we said in our select committee report a week ago.

But what we were told in evidence, that the people on the frontline were inexperienced and untrained officers, we were not told in our evidence, something that Brian has just told me, as we were going on this programme, that actually the Territorial Support Group are usually in the frontline as far as these protests are concerned…

EM: …But that was pretty obvious, that was pretty obvious from the footage we’ve seen in the last few months, why would you put inexperienced officers on the frontline?

KV: Well… It may be pretty obvious, but we can only produce reports on the basis of the evidence that we have received, and certainly the evidence that came to us, the evidence that was given to us in this inquiry, was that the people on the frontline were untrained and inexperienced, and basically that’s why we concluded that the police were pretty lucky in this instance…

BP: …The worrying point, Emily, is that the most senior, the most serious complaints that have been made, for example the ones regarding Ian Tomlinson, all involve Territorial Support Group officers, not the young inexperienced, untrained officers that the senior officers who gave evidence to the Home Affairs Select Committee say were to blame for losing control during that situation.

In my experience it is the experienced Territorial Support Group officers who are more likely to overstep the mark rather than beat officers who are drafted into that situation.

EM: I mean, you talk about overstepping the mark, look at that case study: A young man, picked up off the street, called a ‘fucking Paki’, slapped around… The police have recognised that this is a legitimate complaint…

KV: They have, and they should, it is totally unacceptable behaviour, even though in certain circumstances what the police do in terms of tactics they say is within their rulebook, it’s totally unacceptable behaviour for any individual to be beaten, or…

EM: …But why then, 137 outstanding complaints, we’re talking about one in three officers.

KV: …Well there shouldn’t be, and one of the problems that I think we’ve had is what G20 has spawned, quite rightly, is a number of complaints that cannot be dealt with in the timeframe, that’s why one of the recommendations we put forward, is that additional resources have to be given to the IPCC in order to be able to deal with these complaints. At the moment a third of the entire caseload of the IPCC is actually complaints against officers who were participating in the G20 protest.

EM: Jenny Jones, it does seem extraordinary that at this point we’re just talking about the process to handle complaints. Do we actually need the Territorial Support Group?

JJ: Well, as a Green I’d like to say ‘no, we don’t need them’, but in fact of course I think there will be times when you need that sort of very strong policing, because there are extreme incidents, but I think they are used too frequently, I think that the officers themselves are not rotated enough so they get out of what Brian calls this ‘gang culture’, and I think there could be better training about civil liberties. They’re clearly not doing their job properly.

BP: Let’s put some balance in here though, because these are allegations, they’re being investigated, these officers have not been convicted of any wrongdoing, and we have the word of one person, at the moment, who has made this complaint about their treatment at the hands of the Territorial Support Group, that investigation has not concluded yet.

The second thing to say is what Chris Allison said, which is Territorial Support Group officers quite often are put in the frontline, and so you would expect to some extent them to have more complaints, perhaps, than other officers who are not put into those very stressful situations.

EM: Alright, but let me put you back as, in charge, if you like… These are allegations and you have to deal, let’s imagine, with those allegations. What would you do now, from inside the Met? I mean a complete reshuffle, a complete retrain? Would you disperse them so there isn’t an elite force as such?

BP: Well, you need to have a highly mobile force ready to deal with either a spontaneous outbreak of disorder or to deal with, we’re on the anniversary of the seventh of July bombings, the Territorial Support Group was an extremely useful resource in that sort of situation.

But what you’ve got to make sure is that there’s rotation of those officers on a regular basis so that these cliques do not develop, that they don’t become a law unto themselves, which is the problem we had with the Special Patrol Group before.

EM: Keith Vaz, I come back to my previous point, neither in the report today nor in your report from the Home Affairs Select Committee did we hear any mention of the problems or the scale of the complaints against this force. Don’t you think that’s a pretty bad mess?

KV: It is a pretty bad mess, but you can only produce reports on the basis of evidence that has been given to you, and if a Select Committee is given evidence about the type of officers who were on duty during protests of this kind, we can only conclude on the evidence that we’ve got.

But don’t forget, Denis O’ Connor’s report is an interim report in any event, this was brought out relatively quickly, in order to ensure that some of the main points were dealt with.

But we will certainly return to this subject as a result of the consultations that we will have following the publication of this report. This isn’t the end of it, I think the debate about policing with consent of major events of this kind, which, frankly, this report very helpfully talks about, is something that we have to return to…

EM: Okay…

KV: What the G20 gives us is the opportunity to have that debate with the public.

EM: Jenny Jones, you’ve had that pledge here from Keith Vaz tonight, from the MPA’s perspective, what would you actually like to see in concrete terms?

JJ: Well, I think we have seen the start of a public debate which has not happened before, over many years I have complained about police tactics and mostly I’ve been ignored on the Police Authority, because people just haven’t believed them, we are now in a different era, when we’ve seen some very bad behaviour, the police, I think have got to change.

EM: Thank you very much indeed, thanks for joining me.

G20 Police Witnesses IDed: Metropolitan Police officer ‘T3’

G20 Police Witnesses IDed: Metropolitan Police officer ‘T3’

Just because the media circus has for the most part rolled out to the next town in Sensationland does not mean we have forgotten that many police officers were witness to the deadly assault on Ian Tomlinson on Wednesday 1st April 2009.

Today we turn our attention to the officer labelled throughout this series as ‘T3’.

Some points to note:

  • Definitely male
  • Rather ruddy face
  • 9 o’clock shadow/stubble
  • No numbers on epaulettes
  • No balaclava
  • Helmet chinstrap drawn tight
  • Black gloves
  • Right-handed baton grip
  • Hi-viz jacket opened at top, level with breast badge

Again, if you recognise this officer – one of at least eighteen who saw the deadly assault on Ian Tomlinson, then please speak out.

If you took or have seen a photograph of this police officer elsewhere, please check to see if a shoulder number – or any other means of identification – is visible in that picture.

Ian Tomlinson, RIP. Dead, but not forgotten.

G20 Police Witnesses IDed: Metropolitan Police officer ‘T2’

G20 Police Witnesses IDed: Metropolitan Police officer ‘T2’

G20 Police Witnesses IDed: Metropolitan Police officer ‘T2’

Continuing with our ‘G20 Police Witnesses IDed‘ project, here’s the Metropolitan Police officer we are currently labelling as ‘T2’ – thought to be a Level 2-trained borough officer.

Note:

  • Black balaclava pulled down to just below the nose
  • T-shaped black shield grip on riot shield
  • Right-handed grip on extendable baton
  • Black gloves
  • Shorter than other officers at the scene (possibly a female officer?)

Again, if you recognise this officer – one of at least eighteen who saw the deadly assault on Ian Tomlinson, then please speak out.

If you took or have seen a photograph of this police officer elsewhere, please check to see if the shoulder number in that picture is clearer than here.

Ian Tomlinson, RIP. Dead, but not forgotten.

ETA (1/4/11):

The Tomlinson Inquest is now underway, and officer ‘T2’ has been identified as PC Kerry Smith, a van driver based in Fulham.

PC Smith gave evidence in which she said she was “shocked by the forcefulness of the push” which PC Simon Harwood unleashed upon Ian Tomlinson, causing him to fly head first into the pavement.

G20 Police Witnesses IDed: Metropolitan Police officer ‘T1’

G20 Police Witnesses IDed: Metropolitan Police officer 'T1'

It has been a while since last I posted about the killing of Ian Tomlinson, but like many, I have not forgotten. Today I return to the venture of trying to identify the police officers present at the deadly assault on Mr Tomlinson at Royal Exchange Buildings in central London back on Wednesday 1st April 2009.

Here we have one of the three officers labeled in these blog posts with the letter T. Initially this was because by their dress – with riot helmets and riot shields, and balaclavas on some of them – and by the way they moved together, as a unit, in a manner which suggested drill training, it seemed possible that they were Territorial Support Group (TSG) officers. Indeed, it has subsequently transpired that the officer who actually assaulted Ian Tomlinson in this incident (labeled here as ‘A’) – an officer dressed in a similar fashion, though acting apart from the ‘T’ trio – is a TSG officer.

However, as a commenter on this blog pointed out, and as is reasonably clear from the pictures of officer ‘T1’ here, the ‘T’s shoulder numbers indicate that they are instead what is known as ‘Level 2’s. That is, they are not members of the TSG (a unit which is separate from the borough-based structure of the regular police, and given the shoulder number prefix ‘U’) but local officers used as a tactical reserve to the TSG in public order situations such as the G20 protests under the MAST scheme. They are trained in the same skills and tactics as the full-time TSG, but for four days per year instead of approximately ten days per year for TSG officers (source: Metropolitan Police website via Internet Archive). These Level 2 officers wear their normal shoulder numbers.

As can be seen from the pictures above, ‘T1’ appears to have a double character letter prefix on his epaulette, indicating that he is a borough officer, as well as a three digit number.

Other things to note about officer ‘T1’ include:

  • Black balaclava pulled down to just below the nose
  • Distinctive black button badge over right breast
  • ‘Oblong-over-octagon’ black shield grip on riot shield
  • Right-handed grip on ‘public order long baton’
  • Black gloves
  • Possibly green or blue eyes

If you recognise this officer – one of at least eighteen who saw the deadly assault on Ian Tomlinson, then please speak out.

If you took or have seen a photograph of this police officer elsewhere (perhaps you recognise the badge), please check to see if the shoulder number in that picture is clearer than here.

Above all, please keep up the pressure, please do not forget, please do not let this be swept under the carpet. This is too important to simply leave in the hands of the IPCC, which has just announced that a police officer found wantonly altering notes on the killing of Jean Charles de Menezes will not face any charges.

By way of a postscript, the United Campaign Against Police Violence has been set up in response to the killing of Ian Tomlinson and others by the police, and it continues to keep the pressure up on the IPCC and the police.

G20 Police Witnesses IDed: ‘D1’ positively identified as CP807

Witnesses to G20 Ian Tomlinson assault 1/4/9 (1)

Photographer Marcus Bensasson has come forward with some very good photographs from both Tuesday 31st March and Wednesday 1st April (the actual day of the G20 protests).

They clearly show that the City of London Police dog handler labelled here and elsewhere as ‘D1’ – a witness to the deadly assault on Ian Tomlinson – bears the shoulder number CP807.

In Marcus’ own words:

I saw him the day before the G20 protests outside the Bank of England at around about 2.30pm. I was just passing by and was in the right place at the right time when a suspect package was found and the place was cordoned off while the bomb squad dealt with it. He was the first one to brief the press on what was going on.

G20 Police Witnesses IDed: CP807 aka 'D1'

City of London Police dog handler CP807 (aka ‘D1’) at bomb scare on 31st March 2009 (cropped from picture by Marcus Bensasson)

G20 Police Witnesses IDed: CP807 aka 'D1'

City of London Police dog handler CP807 (aka ‘D1’) at bomb scare on 31st March 2009 (original picture by Marcus Bensasson)

G20 Police Witnesses IDed: CP807 aka 'D1'

City of London Police dog handler CP807 (aka ‘D1’) at bomb scare on 31st March 2009 (cropped from picture by Marcus Bensasson)

G20 Police Witnesses IDed: CP807 aka 'D1'

City of London Police dog handler CP807 (aka ‘D1’) at bomb scare on 31st March 2009 (original picture by Marcus Bensasson)

G20 Police Witnesses IDed: CP807 aka 'D1'

City of London Police dog handler CP807 (aka ‘D1’) at bomb scare on 31st March 2009 (cropped from picture by Marcus Bensasson)

G20 Police Witnesses IDed: CP807 aka 'D1'

City of London Police dog handler CP807 (aka ‘D1’) at bomb scare on 31st March 2009 (original picture by Marcus Bensasson)

Marcus continues:

I next saw him on April 1 on Leadenhall Street a little before 8.30pm, after the police had cleared protesters off Cornhill. Recognising him from the day before, I decided to take a picture. Then on April 8 when the Guardian published stills from the video of Tomlinson being assaulted I realised that it was the same guy. Seeing the pictures of him on your blog confirmed this to me.

G20 Police Witnesses IDed: CP807 aka 'D1'

City of London Police dog handler CP807 (aka ‘D1’) at G20 protests on 1st April 2009 (lightened version of original picture by Marcus Bensasson)

You can see more of Marcus Bensasson’s photography from the G20 protests in his Cornhill Flickr set.

Many thanks to him (and the other photographers, witnesses, commenters and citizen investigators) for helping to shine a light on the circumstances of the death of Ian Tomlinson.