Rashan Charles: Man dies after being chased and arrested by London police, sparking independent investigation

IPCC launches probe into police actions after 20-year-old man dies following incident in Hackney

May Bulman
Sunday 23 July 2017 11:36
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Man dies after being chased and arrested by London police

A man has died after being chased and apprehended by police in a shop in east London, sparking an independent investigation.

The Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) will investigate officers' contact with the man, named locally as 20-year-old Rashan Charles, who died following the incident at Yours Locally, in Dalston, Hackney, in the early hours of Saturday morning.

A Metropolitan Police officer pursued the man on foot after they attempted to stop a car on Kingsland Road1.45am. A statement from Scotland Yard said he went into a shop where he was seen “trying to swallow an object”.

CCTV footage of the incident, which has been widely circulated on social media, shows the man walking into a shop before an officer runs in after him. He is grabbed by the officer who tries to take him out of the shop.

After a struggle, the man is tackled to the ground and the struggle ensues. It continues for more than a minute, during which another plain-clothed man intervenes to apparently help the officer hold the man to the floor.

According to statement from the IPCC, the man became unwell and first aid was provided by a police officer, police medic and paramedics. The IPCC states that it has obtained evidence that indicates an object was removed from his throat at the scene.

The man was taken to the Royal London Hospital, where he died shortly afterwards.

Mr Charles is pinned to the ground by an officer 

Members of the public have responded with outrage on social media, with the hashtag #JusticeForRash trending and many expressing fury at the lack of media coverage.

One asks: "He didn't resist arrest when the police man first got him he walked with him. So why did he slam him to the floor?"

The IPCC declared an independent investigation at 3.10am and investigators were deployed to the scene.

Initial accounts have been taken from a number of non-police eye witnesses who saw the incident, as well as the police officers involved.

The man’s family have been informed and an investigator met with them to explain the IPCC’s investigation and role.

A spokesman from the Metropolitan Police said: “The man entered a shop in Kingsland Road, where he was seen to be trying to swallow an object. The officer intervened and sought to prevent the man from harming himself, but he was then taken ill."

Investigators are keen to speak to any witnesses who were in the Kingsland Road/Middleton Road area of Hackney at this time. Witnesses should make initial contact with investigators by emailing witness_contact@ipcc.gsi.gov.uk

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