Remember Ian Tomlinson dead for 8 months

and still no cops charged over his death

Lots of waffle in the media over the last week about the G20 policing, and various reports and reviews into their misbehaviour have been announced. But a stunning lack of comment or news relating to Ian Tomlinson, the newspaper vendor who died at about 7.25pm on 1 April 2009, just a couple of minutes after being viciously assauled from behind by a member of the Territorial Support Group (TSG – hardcore riot cops).

Ian Tomlinson was dead about 5 minutes later

The Tomlinson Family Campaign have called a candlelit vigil for Tuesday 1 December, from 6pm, at Royal Exchange, by Threadneedle St, London EC3V. This will be exactly 8 months since Ian Tomlinson died. The Family had this to say: “Ian died in tragic circumstances, an ‘innocent passerby’ trying to get home, after a police assault at the G20 protests on April 1st 2009. Eight months on our family are preparing for our first Christmas without him and still waiting for justice. We have been grateful for public support this year and would like an opportunity to hold this public memorial gathering to remember Ian, with our friends and supporters around us. We ask that those who attend please wear black as a mark of respect and remember that this is peaceful event.” You can send messages of support – see the Family website.

8 months after his death no cop has been charged. The IPCC report into his death was passed to the CPS in early August, nearly 4 months later no cop has been charged. A cop from the TSG was interviewed under caution ages ago on a possible charge of manslaughter, and has been suspended (on full pay we believe) since mid-April. But 8 months after the assault, he has not been charged, despite numerous witnesses and masses of footage showing him assault Ian Tomlinson.

Imagine if YOU went on a protest, and in front of a load of witnesses and cameras, assaulted a cop from behind, who died within a couple of minutes just a few meters from where you assaulted him. Do you think that 8 months on YOU would still not have been charged, and would not have been held on remand that whole time? Of course you wouldn’t. You would have been tried, jailed, and no doubt the media would be calling for the death sentence for you. So, do the police get away with killing people? The answer…is apparently YES. Do they get away with cover-ups and misleading the public? The answer…is apparently YES.

There is an excellent timeline leading up to Ian Tomlinson’s death on the Campaign’s website, and a briefing (pdf file) from Inquest in June that raises some very disturbing questions about the police cover-up and the subsequent actions of the IPCC. Justice in Britain? Don’t think so!

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5 responses to “Remember Ian Tomlinson dead for 8 months

  1. Pingback: Tweets that mention Remember Ian Tomlinson dead for 8 months « Prisoner Support Bristol ABC -- Topsy.com

  2. Just curious about what punishment you would propose for these cops if they are ever found guilty of murdering Ian Tomlinson?

    Personally I would have them banged up for a long time. But you are anti prison!

    • You are correct, we are anti-prison. It doesn’t work. It is repressive and oppressive. It is inhumane. It is a very expensive way of dealing with problems in society. It reinforces the power of the state and capital.

      Clearly however, people do commit unacceptable acts, and those who suffer as a result (in this case the family) do have a need for some form of justice, or at least a recognition that what happened was very wrong. ‘Punishment’ can take many forms, and there is much debate about who decides it – in this case should it be the family, or the relevant community, or the wider society? In many ways this is a theoretical debate, in a post-capitalist soiety we tend towards the view that wrongful acts should be decided by local communities, and there are many ‘punishments’ that do not involved locking people up. Long term community-type service, along with loss of privileges, some form of monitoring and rehabilitation, are examples. Some of us tend towards an eye for an eye approach, but again it would be a community decision.

      It is a complicated debate, and one worth having.

      (reply posted by 1 person involved in Bristol ABC)

  3. Its now c0ming up to a year since Tomlinson’s death, and still no charges against the fuzz involved. Yesterday’s London Evening Standard front page was awash with criticisms of the Crown Prosecutui Service being unfit for purpose and it also carried a leader comment to that effect too. It is extraordinary that there isn’t a massive outcry about about no charges against the Tomlinson cops. Even the Guardian that did spit out the lowdown last spring has stayed mum. S’pose something may get coughed up on April 1st when there will be a City of London Tomlinson memorial vigil.

  4. Furthermore regarding whether the cops who were complicit with and involved in the attacks on Tomlinson should be imprisoned. No I reckon they should sentenced to be kept in police custody in police cells and transferred for a fortnight at least into every single UK POLICE STATION to be held in the cells 24/7 as a clear reminder to local plod everywhere that attacks such as they had engaged in were totally of limits. They should be allowed fortnightly supervised visits.

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