The Guardian have obtained footage of the British police attacking a man minutes before he died of a heart attack at the G20 protests in London. In the video, Ian Tomlinson can be seen walking in front of around 10 police officers with his hands in his pocket on his way home from work. Suddenly, one of officers strikes him on the leg with a baton before charging into him and sending him tumbling to the floor. Tomlinson appears dazed and confused although later got up and walked on. Several minutes later though, he collapsed and died of a heart attack.
Everyone understands that the police have a tough job to do when faced with thousands of angry protesters, a minority of which are there just to cause problems. However, this is a blatant example of how heavy handed tactics by the police are not the answer. Tomlinson was clearly not causing any major problems and indeed, wasn’t even involved in the protesting. Why then charge him to the ground?
It will be interesting to see the results of the Independent Police Complaints Commission inquiry into this and let’s hope that the family get some answers and that the UK police learn that heavy handed tactics on innocent people is simply not acceptable.
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