Black Firefighter Victim Of Racism In London
See what happens when one tries to be a good Samaritan?? They get tasered. SMH.
Scotland Yard is facing a new case of alleged police racism after a black firefighter who tried to assist officers while off duty claimed he was targeted because of his skin color, abused, assaulted and shot with a stun gun. The complaint lodged by Edric Kennedy-Macfoy, 28, from north London, is the 10th case involving alleged racism known to have been referred to the official police watchdog in the last three weeks.
Kennedy-Macfoy was driving through Harrow around 3.30am on 4 September when he saw a young man hurl a rock at a police van. After noting a description of the young man, Kennedy-Macfoy, who also trained as a police constable, flagged down the van driver and approached a line of officers to pass the information on. He said he was horrified at their response, which he alleges included officers behaving like “wild animals”: swearing at him, dragging him from his car, subjecting him to a “violent” attack and eventually shooting him with a stun gun.
Kennedy-Macfoy was found not guilty in February of obstructing police. During a two-day trial at Brent magistrates court, Inspector David Bergum, who was present on the night, said his officers were in a “stressful” situation and had been dealing with a group of partygoers who had been throwing missiles at them. He said of Kennedy-Macfoy: “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.” Kennedy-Macfoy’s complaint, which is against six police officers, brings the total number of Met officers currently under investigation for alleged racism to 26.
The firefighter, who left the Hendon police training academy after his mother became ill with cancer in 2005, said he hoped his complaint would make police “think twice” before stereotyping black men. Although Kennedy-Macfoy has worked alongside police officers “almost every day” for six years, and has a number of close friends in the police, he said he had struggled to return to work as a firefighter since the experience.
On the night he was shot with the stun gun, he was wearing a three-piece pinstriped suit and driving a white Audi when he encountered a police roadblock and assumed there had been a road traffic accident. The firefighter noted the man who had thrown the rock was black, wearing blue jeans, a black top and holding a red garment. When the van driver turned the vehicle, he tried to flag him down to pass on the description. According to Kennedy-Macfoy’s complaint, the van driver did not let him speak, shouting: “F**k off you prick.”
However, before he was able to convey the information, Kennedy-Macfoy alleges a number of officers began “hurling abuse” at him, charging at his car and grabbing him “viciously” through the windows. He says he was dragged from the car and in the ensuing melee the officers repeatedly encircled him and shouted profanities. He said he replied calmly and showed his palms to the officers, telling them: “Listen guys, I haven’t done anything wrong. I’m a firefighter – I work with you lot and I just want to explain something. I’ve showed no aggression toward any of you.”
The fireman said he recalled police telling people who were filming the scene with their mobile phones: “Turn those f**king cameras off.” He said the stun gun was discharged when he was walking backwards with his hands in the air. In court, the police officer who discharged the weapon conceded he did not warn Kennedy-Macfoy he was about to be shot – an apparent contravention of Home Office guidelines.
Kennedy-Macfoy’s complaint against police was submitted shortly after the attack. He alleged he was shot without warning and said he believed he had been targeted because of his race. Kennedy-Macfoy said this was not his first experience of discrimination at the hands of police: “I always get stopped by the police and it’s always the same. [Police say:] ‘Oh, you know, loads of these cars get stolen, so we just need to check you are who you say you are, blah blah blah.’ And I know it is because I’m black. My friend Vince, he’s a fireman – he borrows my car sometimes and it’s a running joke at the fire station – he’s never been stopped.”
Sidenote: We hope those are his real eyes and not colored contacts.