United Kingdom

BLM protestors and police standoff after arrest of boy, 14

A major protest is taking place outside a north London police station hours after a 14-year-old boy was arrested on suspicion of possessing 13 bags of cannabis. 

The youngster was arrested by police in Grahame Park, near RAF Hendon at 2.40pm and taken to Colindale Police Station. 

According to Scotland Yard, as they tried to arrest the teenager, the officers were confronted by a group of men who 'obstructed a police vehicle from leaving the scene'.  

A group of 30 or 40 demonstrators congregated outside Colindale police station after a 14-year-old boy was arrested on suspicion of possession of cannabis 

Two men were arrested on suspicion of obstructing officers while constables attempted to load the boy into the back of a police van

A Section 35 dispersal order has been placed over the entire area, according to Scotland Yard

Backup units arrived at the scene and arrested two men, aged 23 and 25. 

The teenager was released from custody under investigation shortly before 9pm with his mother present. 

Police said officers on patrol in The Concourse, NW9 stopped and searched the teenager under the Misuse of Drugs Act. 

Following the arrests, a group of 30-40 people marched down to Colindale police station to demand the release of the boy and the two men. 

Officers were deployed outside the police station and a Section 35 dispersal order was authorised.  

 A 19-year-old man was arrested outside the police station on suspicion of assaulting an officer. 

According to police, 'a number of officers' received minor injuries in skirmishes, but nobody has required hospital treatment. 

The arrests happened less than 24 hours ahead of a major Black Lives Matter protest outside Tottenham police station in memorial of Mark Duggan. 

According to Black Lives Matter UK: 'A police unit have just raided the  @4FrontProject office in North West London, and started making arrests. Team members and the Graeme Park Estate community are at Colindale Police Station demanding immediate release. Huge police line. If you can, head over there now.'

Chief Superintendent Roy Smith said: 'We have lots of mechanisms to listen, learn and be challenged in a calm way and I will personally meet with those involved if they wish'

On Twitter, BLM UK added: '4Front do vital work in the community advocating for young people being harassed by police daily. This is one day before a commemorative protest for Mark Duggan which 4Front co-organised.'

Speaking outside Colindale Police Station, Temi Mwale of the 4Front Project said: 'Today started calmly, it started peacefully with us as community workers asking why a 14-year-old was being arrested? What has he done so we can inform his mum? That is all we wanted to do.

'But they [police] said they did not want to engage with us and did not want to tell us and they aren’t able to tell us anything.

'We had his mum on the phone and we want to be able to tell her what they are doing.

'I can’t go into too much detail, but this is several times this month this same young person has been harassed and been arrested.

'We had to sit down in front of the van and say until you tell us so we can inform his mum, you are not going anywhere.'

The 14-year-old boy was later released from custody under investigation 

In a statement, Chief Superintendent Roy Smith said: 'Whilst I understand that people may feel strongly about some police activity and arrests, interfering or obstructing officers at the scene only serves to inflame an already tense situation.

'Instead, I would ask people to use one of our many mechanisms for engaging and listening when the situation is calmer. This enables both sides to review things with a cool and steady head and in possession of the full range of facts.

'Even when well-intentioned interfering, or obstructing officers carrying out their lawful duties, can cause far more problems than it solves. I am committed to listening, learning and improving but my officers must also have the ability to carry out their duties safely and without fear or favour.

'I am also aware of a number of rumours circulating on social media that specifically relate to injuries sustained by those arrested and the nature of this arrest. I want to clarify that no-one who was arrested required medical treatment. Likewise, this arrest was not as a result of a raid or anything of that nature, this was part of a routine patrol in the area.' 

The Met tonight warned protesters planning to demonstrate in London tomorrow against wearing 'political uniforms', as they could be committing an offence. 

In a statement, Scotland Yard said: 'We want to remind anyone who is taking part in a demonstration in a public place or at a public meeting, not to wear a uniform which is associated with a political purpose, as to do so may be committing an offence under Section 1 of the Public Order Act, 1936.'

The warning follows BLM demonstrations last weekend which saw some protesters wearing paramilitary-style uniforms with berets an anti-stab vests.  

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