Met Police officer jailed for breaking black man’s knee in ‘clear case of racial profiling’

Victim, Carl Abrahams, tells court his children remain scared of police and ‘fear they will be targeted because of the colour of their skin’

Nadine White
Tuesday 13 April 2021 14:43 BST
<p>Convicted officer Charlie Harrison</p>

Convicted officer Charlie Harrison

A Metropolitan Police officer has been jailed for breaking a black man’s knee in front of his children after they had laid flowers on their mother’s grave.

PC Charlie Harrison, 39, was sentenced to two years and three months in prison at Southwark Crown Court on Monday after being found guilty of causing grevious bodily harm (GBH).

Mr Abrahams was leaving a cemetery with his children, having laid flowers on their mother’s grave on New Year’s Eve, 2018, according to reports.

Harrison pulled over in an unmarked patrol car, Southwark Crown Court heard. in plain clothes, with the intention of conducting a police stop.

The officer then used a “leg sweep” on Mr Abrahams, knocking him to the ground and causing him to fracture his knee.

In what a judge called a ‘clear case of racial profiling’, according to The Daily Mail, PC Harrison’s attack left his victim having to seek hospital treatment and use crutches for 12 weeks.

Mr Abrahams reportedly told the court that his children remain scared of police and “fear they will be targeted because of the colour of their skin”.

The judge said PC Harrison would not have approached the father had he been white.

Black men in London are 19 times more likely to be stopped and searched than the general population, a study of official data by University College London has shown.

Mr Abrahams lodged a complaint to Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) in January 2019 and the watchdog decided that the Met should investigate locally.

An investigation was launched by officers from the Directorate of Professional Standards (DPS) and PC Harrison was charged with GBH in August 2019.

Met Police Commander Paul Betts said: “This matter was subject to a thorough investigation by the Met’s Directorate of Professional Standards and PC Harrison charged and later convicted by a jury.

“His actions were found to have fallen well below the standard we expect of our police officers, with a man left badly injured. This type of behaviour has no place in our police service and undermines the confidence of the communities we are here to protect.

“Following PC Harrison’s conviction, he will now be subject to disciplinary proceedings.”

PC Harrison is currently suspended from duty.

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