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Brixton (Incidents)

Volume 29: debated on Thursday 28 October 1982

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asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will call for a report from the Commissioner of Police of the Metropolis concerning incidents involving black youths and the police which took place in Brixton on Thursday 21 October; and if he will make a statement on the substance of this report.

I understand from the Commissioner that there were two incidents in Railton Road on the afternoon of 21 October. In the first, two officers chased and caught a man suspected of having robbed a passer-by. A crowd of about 50 people gathered and attacked the officers in an attempt to release the suspect; the officers, however, drew their truncheons and were able to keep the man in their custody. In the second incident, when two constables stopped a car the passengers in it prevented them from arresting their companion for driving while disqualified and enabled him to escape. The driver was apprehended after a chase, but called on passers-by for help and again escaped in the struggle which followed. When other officers arrived, a bottle of soft drink was thrown at a police vehicle, causing slight damage. The passengers in the car which had been stopped by the police, and one member of the crowd, were arrested, as on the following day was a man understood to have been the driver.The persistence of the officers who arrested the suspected robber, and held him under intimidating circumstances, was particularly praiseworthy. I am encouraged to learn from the Commissioner that responsible members of the community in Brixton continue to support the actions of the police in their efforts to prevent and detect crime.