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Rashan Charles: Met Police officer ‘should be suspended’, IPCC says

PUBLISHED: 09:38 18 September 2017 | UPDATED: 09:50 18 September 2017

Hackney Stand Up To Racism members protest outside Stoke Newington police station in the wake of his death in July. Picture: Lauren Hurley/PA Wire

Hackney Stand Up To Racism members protest outside Stoke Newington police station in the wake of his death in July. Picture: Lauren Hurley/PA Wire

The police officer who restrained Rashan Charles on the floor of a Dalston shop hours before his death should be suspended, the police watchdog has said.

Flowers were laid outside Yours Locally in Kingsland Road following the death of Rashan Charles. Picture: Emma BartholomewFlowers were laid outside Yours Locally in Kingsland Road following the death of Rashan Charles. Picture: Emma Bartholomew

Rashan Charles, 20, died on July 22 after being chased into Yours Locally and tackled to the floor of the Kingsland Road shop.

The Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) said it had “made representations” to Scotland Yard to suspend the officer pending further investigation.

A spokesman said: “It is not a formal recommendation as such, but a representation. It is now a matter for the police force.

“The representation is based on where we are in the investigation.”

IPCC investigators have formally notified the officer who restrained Mr Charles that he is being investigated for gross misconduct. He was seen on shop CCTV being aided by a bystander while Mr Charles struggled and then stopped moving.

The IPCC previously said it had found that after Mr Rashan was detained, attempts were made to remove an object from his mouth or throat. It was later revealed that a package removed from his throat had been a mixture of caffeine and paracetamol wrapped in cellophane.

Two post mortem examinations have been carried out on Mr Charles, the second on behalf of his family and the police – but no medical cause of death has yet been offered. The results of toxicology and other tests are still pending, coroner’s officer David Brereton said.

Mr Charles’s family has expressed concerns over the “openness and transparency” of the IPCC investigation into his death. A full inquest is expected to be held in front of a jury next June.

A Met spokesman said: “The officer is not suspended or on restricted duties at this time.

“The IPCC served a notice on the officer on September 11.

“As is normal practice, the Metropolitan Police Service then wrote to the IPCC to ask for their views on what restrictions, if any, should be placed on the officer.

“The Met received those representations from the IPCC on Friday and they are currently being assessed.”

Friends, family and supporters of Mr Charles protested in Dalston and Stoke Newington in the days following his death, saying he was a victim of police brutality and demanding the officer’s suspension.

Scotland Yard told the Gazette at the time that there were no grounds to remove him from duty.

Additional reporting by Press Association

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