Police clash with women at Sarah Everard vigil
14 Mar 2021
The London Metropolitan police clashed with attendees at the Clapham vigil for Sarah Everard last night earning widespread condemnation.
The vigil set up by Reclaim These Streets was attended by hundreds, who wished to pay their respects to the late 33 year old who was allegedly killed by a serving Met Police officer. Viral scenes of violence were shared on social media, leading to large scale criticism of the Met.
Jamie Klingler, from Reclaim These Streets said: “We told the Met that it was going to be worse if we didn’t have the organisation that we already had planned that was Covid-safe,”
The group added in a statement that it was “deeply saddened and angered” by the police’s actions and criticised officers for “physically manhandling women at a vigil against male violence”.
“It is their responsibility to protect public order, public health and the right to protest – they failed tonight on all accounts,” the group added in a statement.
For some reason well wishers were met with a significant police presence which eventually led to the physical clash between the two. Officers were seen handcuffing and leading women away from the event with four arrests were made to “protect people’s safety”.
Home Secretary Priti Patel has asked the Met for a report on what happened, while London Mayor Sadiq Khan said he was “urgently seeking an explanation” from Commissioner Dame Cressida Dick.
“The police have a responsibility to enforce Covid laws but from images I’ve seen it’s clear the response was at times neither appropriate nor proportionate,” Khan tweeted.