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Racism and the Metropolitan Police: Firefighter Edric Kennedy-Macfoy in Racism Allegations

Posted on the 20 April 2012 by Periscope @periscopepost
Racism and the Metropolitan Police: Firefighter Edric Kennedy-Macfoy in racism allegations

Metropolitan police. Photocredit:

Racism in the Metropolitan Police force in London is under scrutiny: there are currently 12 cases of alleged racism being investigated. The latest to come to light is the case of Edric Kennedy-Macfoy. The 28 year old is a firefighter, who claims that when he tried to assist police officers when off duty, he was targeted because of his skin color. This comes in the same week as Metropolitan police commissioner Bernard Hogan-Howe declares himself an “implacable enemy” of racism. The suspicious death of black bus driver Kester David is also being investigated, after officers failed to interview witnesses after more than a year, reported The Guardian.

When Kennedy-Macfoy saw a man throwing rocks at a police van early in the morning on a night in September, he stopped to pass on information to a line of police: he says that the policemen behaved like “wild animals” – that they swore at him, dragged him from his car, attacked him, and shot him with a stun gun. He was wearing a three-piece pinstriped suit, according to The Guardian, and driving a white Audi. Police officers allegedly shot him with a stun gun in the back. They had been clearing a party, which they say was attended by black people; they claim that they thought Kennedy-Macfoy broke the cordon. The police then tried to prosecute him for obstructing them; he was cleared.

Edric Kennedy-Macfoy’s statement is available in full here.

What do the police say? “I couldn’t say he was anything to do with the party. The party was all black. He was black. He had driven through the cordon. I had to do a quick risk assessment,” said Inspector David Bergum, present on the night. He said the the situation had been “stressful.”

It doesn’t look good for the Met. Metropolitan Police Commissioner Bernard Hogan-Howe, said, now “has a chance to put his money where his mouth is.” The case of Kennnedy-Macfoy “certainly lends to the growing disdain of law enforcement.” The fact that he is a firefighter “only worsens the situtation.” The case was handled badly – evidence even went missing.

There are other cases. Kester David’s brother, Roger David, said to Bernard Hogan-Howe earlier this week: “I think your force needs to buck up its ideas and realize that black and ethnic people are here in Britain, we’re part of society and we request and demand the same kind of treatments as white people in Britain.”

What are people saying? Twitter comments ranged from Sicily Gianni, who offered her “Full Support” to Edric Kennedy-Macfoy, to Original Cindy, who said that he had “far too much muscle but he is beautiful.” Over on The Sun, a reader offered this: “Thats [sic] the British cops for you they are a law unto themselves and they always and I mean always get away with their actions.” On The Huffington Post, one user was a bit more measured: “firefighters tend to help police … and these officers should have used common decency and done at least a minimal investigation ‘who are you and what are you here for’  before pulling out the taser. There is no excuse for racially motivated police brutality.”

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