Thursday, February 12, 2015

Father-of-two who was wrestled to the ground and charged using a 168-year-old law during row with police is awarded £5,000 for being falsely imprisoned

And the cops are still denying what the CCTV showed

A grandfather-of-three has been awarded £5,000 compensation after being assaulted and falsely charged by police under a 168-year-old law. Eddie Blakeway, 49, was falsely imprisoned while he attended Halesowen police station in the West Midlands to complete a form to report how his son had been the victim of a hit-and-run.

Following a disagreement about identity documentation required to go with the form, the part-time lorry driver was wrestled to the floor, handcuffed and locked in a cell for more than nine hours.

Mr Blakeway - who suffers from back pain following an accident at work - was then charged with being violent in a police station contrary to section 29 of the Town and Police Clauses Act (1847).

He pleaded not guilty at court and prosecutors dropped the case at his trial in March 2010. He then pursued a compensation claim against West Midlands Police and settled out of court in December.

The grandfather said trouble began in October 2009 after he gave the form to the duty officer, who refused to take it and said his son's ID documents were required - which he did not have on him.

Mr Blakeway, who then asked to talk to the inspector in charge, added: 'When the inspector arrived, he said I was being aggressive and asked me "to get out of his station".

CCTV footage shows a scuffle in which Mr Blakeway said the inspector, a sergeant and a third officer forced him to the ground. He said he was then locked in the custody suite

'I couldn't walk properly afterwards. Then they put me in the cell for nine-and-a-half hours. There was nothing in there. There was nothing to drink, nothing at all.

'They had arrested me but I wasn't violent. I did nothing wrong. I phoned the Independent Police Complaints Commission straight away. All I wanted out of it was who was right.

Mr Blakeway, who is also a father-of-two, instructed police claims solicitor Iain Gould to pursue his compensation bid for false imprisonment and assault by the officers in Birmingham County Court.

Mr Gould said: ‘My client merely complained about poor service. His reward was an unprovoked and painful arrest; detention in a cold, stark cell; and the stress of a criminal prosecution.

West Midlands Police spokesman said the jury 'found, as a matter of fact, that Mr Blakeway had not been told that he was under arrest and, therefore, as a matter of law, his arrest and all that followed was unlawful'

‘Mr Blakeway took the case to trial to clear his good name, especially in front of his wife who stood by him throughout. He agreed only £5,000 out of court rather than trouble the jury any longer.’

She added: ‘There was an internal investigation into the actions of the sergeant regarding Mr Blakeway, but no action was taken against him as the complaint was not upheld. There is no official complaint recorded against the inspectors’ name.'

Original report here

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