The Guardian is continuing to hold the Metropolitan Police to account over its actions surrounding the death (and subsequent misleading of the media) of Ian Tomlinson, a newspaper vendor who died after being pushed in the back by a police officer during the G20 protests.
The paper has produced evidence that three Metropolitan police officers had come forward to say they had witnessed a policeman pushing Mr Tomlinson to the ground, and suggests that this information was “held back” from the Independent Police Complaints Commission’s (IPCC) investigation.
It alleges: “Senior police were told 48 hours after Ian Tomlinson’s death that officers had witnessed a colleague push him to the ground at the G20 protests, but the information was withheld from the police watchdog.”
The new evidence has forced the IPCC to open another investigation into what happened to the information and why it was withheld; today it publishes a separate report that studies whether police and press officers misled the media and Mr Tomlinson’s family following his death.
The Guardian‘s Paul Lewis has followed this story doggedly since he received footage of Met officer Simon Harwood pushing the newspaper vendor, causing much embarrassment for the police, which initially claimed that Mr Tomlinson’s family was “not surprised” by his death, and appeared to brush any suspicion of foul play under the carpet through press releases and statements.
But just last week an inquest jury concluded that Mr Harwood had “unlawfully killed” Mr Tomlinson, a decision reached with evidence given by two of the three police officers that witnessed Mr Harwood’s actions on the day, and a case that probably would have never come to light had it not been for Lewis’ determination.
Photo taken by Flickr user RachelH_, licensed under Creative Commons.