Police officer charged with murder – Dalian Atkinson

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  • Police officer charged with murder – Dalian Atkinson
  • Premier Icon v8ninety
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    https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2019/nov/07/police-officer-charged-with-murder-of-dalian-atkinson

    Crikey. I can’t help but feel a little uncomfortable with this. I obviously don’t know the ins and outs of the incident, but from what has been published, it was an extremely challenging episode for everyone involved. Mr Atkinson’s brother was quoted as saying that Atkinson was ‘in a manic state, out of his mind and ranting’ and threatening to kill his father. I’m sure that in the heat of the moment mistakes were made in regard to the methods of restraint involved, but the police officers were called to protect an elderly man from a 6” tall ex athlete who was a ranting, manic and shouting that he’d already killed people. He was also covered in (turns out, his own) blood, which is bound to up the ante in the eyes of the responding officers.

    The press are focusing on the taser element of the attempted arrest, but I suspect the subsequent restraint will become more relevant as the case progresses.

    I can’t help but think that this case is going to make police officers all over the country less likely to utilise the tools given to them to detain dangerous individuals, possibly to the detriment of themselves and others.

    Obviously, the trial is ongoing, this thread is pure speculation, we don’t know what the CPS lawyers know and so forth, but I think a conversation about this will be interesting. Is this prosecution really in the public interests?

    I’m glad I’m not a copper today. All the best to those in blue.

    tjagain
    Member

    For him to be charged with murder there must be pretty strong evidence given how rarely police are prosecuted.

    As you say – it will be the restraint thats the issue I bet. For it to be murder there must have been a deliberate attempt to kill not a misadventure / accident / overzealousness as that would be a lessor charge.

    Very unusual case.

    For it to be murder there must have been a deliberate attempt to kill

    or cause grievous bodily harm.

    For him to be charged with murder there must be pretty strong evidence given how rarely police are prosecuted.

    Not at all. Cops are quite often prosecuted.
    This will be part of an investigation and isn’t that unusual. It’s only a headline because if the victim being an ex footballer. As long as the officer used reasonable force and can justify that then the officer will be ok.
    However, to have this case hanging over them for so long, having to go to court to justify their actions made in a split second is really really shit.

    As long as the officer used reasonable force and can justify that then the officer will be ok.

    Wouldn’t the CPS have looked that the case and decided there was a better than 50pc chance the officer *hadn’t* used reasonable force? If they thought it was obviously reasonable force it wouldn’t have gone to trial, surely?

    On the scant info available my sympathy is 100pc with the rozzers on this one. An impossible situation for them.

    Premier Icon wwaswas
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    They must be fairly clear there was intent rather than just reasonable force resulting in death which would be manslaughter?

    Premier Icon epicyclo
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    Sounds like politics to me.

    But we do not have the facts that are available to the prosecution, and I doubt they’d make that charge lightly.

    Depends on a few things, the initial briefing, intel etc. However the decision to use force remains with the individual officer. And that officer will have to justify why taser was deployed and any follow up actions.
    Think back to the Jean Charles Demezez shooting in London. Officers had to go to court and justify their actions. Same here but with Taser not conventional weapons.

    Premier Icon v8ninety
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    As long as the officer used reasonable force and can justify that then the officer will be ok.

    It’s gone beyond that point. Even if acquitted, he’ll likely be sacked. Differing burdens of proof for criminal vs civil (disciplinary in his case) cases.

    For it to be murder there must have been a deliberate attempt to kill (or GBH)

    This is what I find SO hard to get my head around. It doesn’t fit with the details that we know about the circumstances.

    resulting in death which would be manslaughter?

    There is an alternate charge of manslaughter being offered. Most press coverage has glossed over that.

    Think about how many AFO’s (Firearms officers) have had to go to court over the years, for simply doing their job. There are loads of factors to consider, but as I have said the decision to pull the trigger (in this case a taser) lies with the individual officer.

    Premier Icon salad_dodger
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    Has a UK police officer ever been convicted of murder?

    It’s gone beyond that point. Even if acquitted, he’ll likely be sacked. Differing burdens of proof for criminal vs civil (disciplinary in his case) cases.

    Nah, that’s crap

    Premier Icon v8ninety
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    Nah, that’s crap

    Read up about the officers involved in the Kingsley Burrell case. Then tell me it’s crap.

    tjagain
    Member

    We are all speculating in the dark really

    This appears very differnt to case such as Mendez or Duggan tho in that the charge is murder.

    tjagain
    Member

    I just looked up that case. the officers were charged with using excessive force not murder and the one dismissed was dismissed for lying

    Premier Icon v8ninety
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    Think about how many AFO’s (Firearms officers) have had to go to court over the years, for simply doing their job.

    Most don’t; coroner returns verdict of lawful killing = no case to answer.

    Taser is a less lethal option. Not a conventional firearm. So how did the subject die? Unless there were underlying health issues that the officers didn’t know about or if there were issues with the subjects aftercare then the use/ deployment of the taser is a non issue here.

    Premier Icon v8ninety
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    I just looked up that case.

    In two minutes? Yep, that’s what they got the officer for in the end. I should imagine that there would be inconsistencies in my statements and cross examination answers over the course of what, seven years? in their situation too.

    The Wikipedia entry, for all that’s worth, mentions cardiac arrest. Then obviously positional asphyxia or excited delirium are possibilities.

    Premier Icon v8ninety
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    cardiac arrest.

    Everyone dies of cardiac arrest in the end…

    flannol
    Member

    I can’t help but feel a little uncomfortable with this.

    They throw the book in the absolute strongest way they can possibly muster, in every single opportunity they can, at us, why shouldn’t we expect the same force of law to apply to them?

    Premier Icon v8ninety
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    They throw the book in the absolute strongest way they can possibly muster, in every single opportunity they can

    As someone who has been the beneficiary of an experienced officers discretion on more than one occasion in my ‘yoof’ this simply isn’t true.

    And the CPS are always right, 100% of the time…

    strange strange story, has to be something more to it than we’ve been told in public

    man going beserk covered in bloody threatening to kill his dad, gets tasered to calm the situation….dies of underlying heart problem (not sure how the cops would know this)…..cop arrested for MURDER??

    struggling to see how its even manslaughter let alone going firmly out of his way to murder him

    again this is only what ive read from day one, it doesn’t stand up, I cant see any jury convicting him of murder given what we as the public have been told

    Everyone dies of cardiac arrest in the end…

    Good point

    tjagain
    Member

    my point being that usually in these sorts of cases its either no case to answer or excessive force are the charges – for this one to be charged as murder the CPS must have something pretty strong we do not know about

    On the surface it seems very odd to charge with murder. there must be information that is not in the public domain

    Premier Icon scaredypants
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    Taser, followed by a period of restraint

      and other uses of force

    .”

    Jenny Hopkins from the CPS said: “… A second police constable, from the same force, has been charged with assault causing actual bodily harm”

    hints at bits on which the case will presumably be founded

    flannol
    Member

    As someone who has been the beneficiary of an experienced officers discretion on more than one occasion in my ‘yoof’ this simply isn’t true.

    Fair enough! Honestly I don’t really know. You’re prob right…

    Hopefully the courts are fair

    Premier Icon timidwheeler
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    However, to have this case hanging over them for so long, having to go to court to justify their actions made in a split second is really really shit.

    As long as the officer used reasonable force and can justify that then the officer will be ok

    Not that ok. As he has been charged with murder he was remanded to prison.

    tjagain
    Member

    Jeepers thats harsh.

    Premier Icon timidwheeler
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    To be fair the BBC have changed their report and say he was then granted bail at a later hearing.

    mattyfez
    Member

    Maybe he was battered after being restrined? cant see how else they’d go for murder?

    tjagain
    Member

    Must be something like that – or choke hold or something I would have thought. Certainly must be more than excessive force or simple retraint I would have thought but we just do not know

    MSP
    Member

    A witness at the time claimed they laid into him, kicking him on the ground after they had tazzerd him. If the physical evidence corroborates that claim then the murder charge is quite right and should have been brought much sooner.

    Premier Icon siwhite
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    Utter political BS.

    It has taken the IPOC THREE YEARS to get to a charging decision, during which time the Officer’s life will have been on hold. Now they have been Remanded in Custody awaiting trial – despite the legal presumption against bail in such cases, this is surely an exceptional case. The IPOC are desperate to stick us on at any opportunity, and are universally hated amongst the rank and file for their open hostility, lack of impartiality and slow investigations.

    We’ve had Officers hand in their Tasers as a result of this job, and I now wouldn’t carry one.

    Remanded by the magistrate, appealed, and bailed by the crown court si – nothing too unusual there given the charge.

    nealglover
    Member

    strange strange story, has to be something more to it than we’ve been told in public

    man going beserk covered in bloody threatening to kill his dad, gets tasered to calm the situation….dies of underlying heart problem (not sure how the cops would know this)…..cop arrested for MURDER??

    Pretty sure some of that isn’t actually what the public have been told ?

    regenesis
    Member

    Everyone dies of cardiac arrest in the end…

    Good point

    Can think of several ways to die where you heart stopping isn’t what kills you.

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