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Fatalities All Too Common: British Prime Minister Ignores Problem of Rampant Police Brutality


By dlindorff - Posted on 04 November 2011

 

By Linn Washington Jr.

 

London -- For a dozen years they had marched peacefully to the street containing the residence of Britain’s prime minister, asking the current occupant of #10 Downing Street to investigate the scourge ripping at the soul of this nation.

That scourge is the thousands of suspicious deaths occurring while in the custody of British police, in British prisons and in British mental health facilities.

Eight persons died in police custody just during the first nine months of 2011, according to official British government statistics. That’s more than double the custody deaths last year.

One of those deaths involved a 49-year-old reggae music singer who police claimed had committed suicide by plunging a butcher knife into his heart while making tea in his kitchen, allegedly for officers who were in his house conducting a drug investigation.

That knife contained no fingerprints of the dead singer.

This year, on their thirteenth march to Downing Street the demonstrators endured, for the first time -- the very thing they were protesting against: abuse by police.

This year police responded to this annual march by the United Families and Friends Campaign (UFFC) by roughing up some demonstrators, and by denying them their desire to simply pin their demands to the gate blocking entrance to Downing Street as they’ve done without incident in past years.

 

“That the families of those who have died in custody can be treated in this way is an outrage,” wrote Lee Jasper, a respected social justice activist who served as the head steward for the latest march, on his blog.

UFFC personnel at the protest march passed out a broadsheet containing the names of 3,180 individuals compiled by UFFC as having died suspiciously since 1969 while in the custody of police, prisons, psychiatric units and immigration detention centers throughout Britain.

“Too many have died in questionable circumstances,” stated a message on that broadsheet. “Too many killed unlawfully…and pitifully too few held to account for the deaths of those we name here.”

Jasper criticized London’s conservative Mayor Boris Johnson and the capital city’s new Police Commissioner Hogan Howe for the aggressive policing. Jasper served as the policy Director for Policing and Equalities for the mayor Johnson replaced in 2008.

Jasper, blasting police for attacking peaceful protesters, including children and the elderly, characterized police-black community relations as being at a “historic low,” and he warned that the police fracas during that protest march will make an “already bad situation much worse.”...

 

For the rest of this article by LINN WASHINGTON, JR., in ThisCantBeHappening!, the new award-winning independent online alternative newspaper, please go to: www.thiscantbehappening.net/node/883

Quote :

One of those deaths involved a 49-year-old reggae music singer who police claimed had committed suicide by plunging a butcher knife into his heart while making tea in his kitchen, allegedly for officers who were in his house conducting a drug investigation.

That knife contained no fingerprints of the dead singer.

So while the singer's residence was being raided by police, he ran to his kitchen, put on some gloves to not leave fingerprints on the knife, and then he stabbed himself in the heart with the knife.

Now, that's quite a conspiracy theory, or theory about a conspiracy, and that conspiracy of course couldn't have been by the singer, since he apparently was alone and it takes at least two people for a conspiracy to be possible.  The police would've conspired to kill him and claim that he committed suicide to avoid being "busted" for possession of some drugs, while forgetting or neglecting to make sure that his prints were on the knife.

How often do people who commit suicide do it because of police raids?  I've never heard or read of any example cases, though suppose it might've happened once or twice over the past century.  Meanwhile, there've been many suicides.  And I've never heard of any being committed with the victims stabbing themselves in the heart, which.  I don't imagine that it's really credible that the singer did this to himself.  And that he was supposedly making tea for the police, and suddenly chose to plunge a butcher knife into his heart?  It's simply not credible that he did this.

Did any of you notice that the moon was full last night and had a smilies face; like smilies people include in Web writings?

Quoting from the full article:

A few days after the UFFC march, police officials in London announced that six officers involved in smashing a taxi cab with baseball bats while arresting the cab’s driver would keep their jobs despite overly aggressive behavior which government oversight authorities had contended was unreasonable.


The bat-wielding officers received minor reprimands despite authorities having found no evidence supporting the officers’ explanation for their assault.

The London or British police are completely nuts, mad, vicious animals, insane, et cetera.  How is smashing a taxi cab supposed to help any number of officers arrest a single taxi driver, and what the heck are police doing carrying baseball bats with them when on police duty?

And, for extra offenciveness towards the population, the government punishes police for mistreatment of police dogs, while treating police responsible for the deaths of many people who were in custody with impunity.

In 2010 a British policemen received a six-month suspended sentence for the death of two police dogs he left inside a vehicle on a sweltering day. In 1998 two British policemen received convictions for cruelty to police dogs, one receiving a four-month jail term, later reduced to three months.

The first and still only conviction of British police for an on-duty killing of a human being occurred in 1969, when two policemen received guilty verdicts for killing a black man.

I appreciate punishment for abuse of the dogs, but this is ridiculous when the killing of persons held in custody and who apparently weren't killed by other prisoners is treated as if no serious wrong was committed by the police.

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