Death of G20 protester: defend our freedom to protest!

On 4 April protestors took to the streets to express their compassion with the family of Ian Tomlinson who tragically died during the 1 April protests at the Bank of England. They were calling for an independent public inquiry into the instances of police violence that occurred though out the week and to establish to true circumstances of his death.

From the statement read at the demonstration:

•    We would firstly like to express condolences to the family and friends of Ian Tomlinson who died on Wednesday.

•    Multiple witnesses have now come forward who saw Mr. Tomlinson before his death on Wednesday.

•    One eye witness said:
“The police surrounded the collapsed man. I was standing with the person who’d called 999. The ambulance dispatcher wanted to talk to the police, the phone was being held out to them, but the police refused.”

•    Another eye witness said
“I saw a man violently propelled forward (as though he’d been flung by the arm) and fall forward on his head. He hit the top front area of his head on the pavement. I noticed his fall particularly because it struck me as a horrifically forceful push by a policeman and an especially hard fall; it made me wince.’

•    We now have compelling evidence that Ian Tomlinson’s death may have been caused by the police – eye-witnesses have confirmed to us that he was pushed back from police lines, falling heavily and hitting his head, prior to his collapse.

•    He was initially treated by protesters and their statements raise questions about the police meeting their duty of care to Mr. Tomlinson.

•    The family should contact an independent lawyer immediately to arrange a second Post Mortem – this is their right. The family should be independently represented at the inquest that will follow. This must be a jury inquest.

•    Our aim is to establish the truth and let the public know. We will use the internet and the press to put all the information we gather into the public domain.

•    Witnesses will cooperate fully with the Independent Police Complaints Commission, however we remain sceptical about their process of investigation and the eventual outcome and we call for a full public enquiry to look into Mr. Tomlinson’s death and the police tactics used throughout the G20 protests.

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