My friend was treated like a violent criminal with an officer on each limb and one on his head


I was in college when I had my first overwhelmingly negative encounter with the police. I had previous experience of being stopped and searched but for the most part I had been okay with it. A friend and I were inside a bus station eating food and waiting for another friend before catching our bus. It was pouring with rain outside. It was a busy day and although there were many people in the station, two officers made their way to me and my friend and began a stop and account interaction.

The officers asked us what we were waiting for and when we told them we were waiting for a friend before we got on our bus, they suggested that we should wait outside and get on the next bus. I highlighted that it was pouring with rain and we were in a bus station therefore within our right to wait inside, furthermore, we were still waiting for a friend to go home together. The officers continued to insist that we wait outside and we continued to refuse as it was raining heavily. I didn’t know my rights in regards to what they were telling us to do, but I felt as though the officers had targeted us and were now trying to aggravate us for no apparent reason other than to exercise their power. The bus shelter was quite busy and to my knowledge we were the only people they were asking to stand outside in the rain.

This interaction had gone on for a few minutes and it wasn’t long before one of the officers grabbed me in an attempt to usher me to the exit, however my friend stepped forward and pulled me away. Almost instantaneously about four more officers had arrived and forcefully pinned him to the ground. The officer who was handling me at first had also joined in and, although he was quite a big lad for a 17 year old, my friend was treated like a violent criminal with an officer on each limb and one holding down his head with their knee.

Whilst this was going on there were a number of people trying to record but the officers insisted that they put their phones away, at the time the law concerning recording police was unknown to many of us and therefore the majority complied. My friend was taken to the police station where he suffered a broken wrist, although he was charged with assaulting an officer he was released the next morning and the charge was taken no further. He didn’t want to complain or make a fuss because he didn’t want any more hassle so we just left it. 

police violence

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