MP Eric Joyce charged with common assault and criminal damage

Joyce says he was attempting to detain a vandal

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The Independent Online

Falkirk MP Eric Joyce has been charged with two counts of common assault and one count of criminal damage, according to police.

Joyce, 54, who left Labour to become an independent, has insisted that he was attempting to detain a vandal during the incident in Camden, North London, on 17 October.

He made clear that he did not feel he was “in the wrong”.

Joyce is due to appear at Highbury Corner Magistrates' Court on 30 December, the Metropolitan Police have said.

On his blog following his arrest in October, the former Army major wrote: "I detained a youth in a shop in London. Damage had been done to the store."

He added that he asked the shopkeeper to contact the police, and "officers arrested the youth" when they arrived.

"The officers also informed me that the youth had immediately made a complaint that I had assaulted him by detaining him," he continued.

"I was questioned by the police and told that because of my identity the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) and the Metropolitan Police Press Office would be informed of the incident.

"I understand the Metropolitan Police has now made the matter public. I will make no further comment for now, other than to say a) that no alcohol was involved and b) I am not in the habit of summoning the police if I feel that I am in the wrong," he added.

Additional reporting by PA