London mayor seeks answers over Taser use on rapper's father
LONDON (AP) — London’s mayor has called for an urgent investigation after rapper Wretch 32 released a video of his father being tasered in his home by a British police officer.
The 36-second clip posted late Tuesday on Twitter shows police entering a house. An officer says “Police officer with a Taser. Stay where you are” before a man — 62-year-old Millard Scott — tumbles down a flight of stairs. Police officers are then seen asking the man if he is OK.
Wretch 32 wrote: “This is how the police think they can treat a 62-year-old black man in Tottenham but this 1 happens to be my dad.”
The rapper, 35, told ITV News there has been “no progression” since he grew up watching his father and his uncle “fight against police brutality.”
“I now have to have the same conversations ( with my children) that my dad and my uncle and my grandparents and my parents had with me,” he said.
Large demonstrations have been held across the U.K. against racial injustice and police brutality since the May 25 death of George Floyd at the hands of police in Minneapolis, which has spurred a global tide of protest. Floyd was buried Tuesday in Houston after a funeral service at which speakers predicted he will be remembered forever for changing history.
London’s Metropolitan Police confirmed that a stun gun was discharged during an April 21 raid in north London’s Tottenham area targeting the supply of illegal drugs. The force said the Taser was used when a man “started moving towards an officer suddenly” and did not stop “after several warnings.”
It said the man was not arrested and did not need medical treatment. Police said a 22-year-old man was arrested at the house and charged with encouraging another person to commit an offense and a 52-year-old woman was charged later with obstructing the police.
Police said a review of the incident had found no indication of misconduct. But London Mayor Sadiq Khan said it should be investigated by the Independent Office for Police Conduct.
“I have asked the Metropolitan Police for an urgent explanation of this distressing incident, which is understandably causing considerable concern,” the mayor said. “It is absolutely vital that our police service retains the trust of the communities it serves.”
Police officers discharged Tasers 2,700 times in England and Wales in year to March 2019, according to government statistics. The Independent Office for Police Conduct said last month that there were growing concerns “about its disproportionate use against black men and those with mental health issues.”
Read all AP stories about the global protests against racial injustice and police brutality at https://apnews.com/GeorgeFloyd