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 Jody McIntyre wheelchair complaint: Tuition fees police cleared

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Join date : 2011-03-24

PostSubject: Jody McIntyre wheelchair complaint: Tuition fees police cleared   Fri May 27, 2011 8:58 pm

Jody McIntyre wheelchair complaint: Tuition fees police cleared

Police were justified in removing a man from his wheelchair during a violent demonstration against tuition fees in central London, Scotland Yard has said.

Jody McIntyre said he was tipped out of his chair and dragged across a road on 9 December, and was hit with a baton.

A police probe found officers were right to remove him from the wheelchair based on the "perceived risk" to him, while the baton hit was "inadvertent".

The 20-year-old said the findings were "shockingly poor" and plans to appeal.

The Directorate of Professional Standards at the Metropolitan Police (Met) said violent disorder had been taking place and officers were "under sustained attack and were required to use force to protect themselves".

"Whilst there is evidence that Jody McIntyre was inadvertently struck with a police baton, the investigation found that the actions of officers were justifiable and lawful given the volatile and dangerous situation," the force added in a statement.

"His removal from his wheelchair was also justifiable given the officers' perceived risk to Jody McIntyre."
'Telling' findings

But Mr McIntyre said he found it "stunning that their justification for their violence towards me is that I was in the way of a violent attack on a crowd of protesters, which included children".

"Remarkably, the report even contains the suggestion that I threw myself from my wheelchair," he added.

"Throughout the report the police officers involved have stated that they were acting in my best interests, and this appears to have been accepted by those carrying out the investigation."

It was a "telling indication" of how the Met viewed disability, he said.

The force appeared to believe that "the fact someone has a disability renders them incapable of determining their own best interest or to act with autonomy", he said.

Following the investigation, internal guidelines will be drawn up on the most appropriate way to move a wheelchair user in such circumstances.

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