Rock Ferry man arrested following incident in Liverpool

A Rock Ferry man was arrested following an incident in Liverpool centre city on Sunday, 14 April.

At around 1pm, Merseyside Police officers were in the city centre where a peaceful protest was taking place, having liaised with organisers ahead of the protest to help minimise disruption to the roads and ensure the safety of the public and the protestors.

A man was seen being obstructive and verbally abusive to officers as the march passed along Hope Street, down Hardman Street, and onto Bold Street.

At that point, the man began acting aggressively, approaching officers and subsequently punching an officer to the shoulder. As a result he was restrained, at which point he resisted arrest, kicking an officer to the face.

In a statement, Merseyside Police said, “Merseyside Police respects the right to protest and expression of views, and our officers were in the city centre to ensure the safety of protestors and other members of the public, but aggressive and abusive behaviour will not be tolerated and will be dealt with robustly.”

The 37-year-old man from Rock Ferry was arrested on suspicion of two counts of assaulting an emergency worker, and assault and obstructing/resisting a constable in the execution of their duty. He was taken into custody to be questioned and has since been bailed.

Merseyside Police has said that it subseqently received a complaint from a man following the arrest and the matter is being investigated by Merseyside Police’s Professional Standards Department.

Chief Constable Serena Kennedy said, “My officers were deployed to the city centre on Sunday to ensure the rights of those protesting peacefully were protected, and that there was minimal disruption to other members of the public.

“The overwhelming majority of those in attendance had behaved impeccably. Unfortunately, one man was seen to be acting in an aggressive and abusive manner. It appears that he was deliberately trying to provoke officers who showed admirable discipline in the face of that provocation.

“His actions then turned violent, with him punching an officer to the shoulder. In light of those actions it was necessary for the man to be arrested and restrained so as to defuse the situation to prevent further harm coming to officers or the public.

“I am aware that a complaint has been made and I can reassure those that are concerned that this will be thoroughly investigated. I have been reassured, from an initial review of the incident, that the tactics used were entirely appropriate. However, this will be the subject of an in-depth investigation.”

Chief Constable Kennedy added, “Every day, Merseyside Police officers do brave things to protect people. They put themselves in harm’s way to stop people hurting themselves and others, and dedicate their careers to public service, often at great cost to themselves.

“That job can often be challenging, and decisions have to be made on the spot in highly pressured situations. But officers turn up for work knowing that, and they do so with pride.

“I know my officers will continue to do everything within their powers to protect the public, and they know they have my full support.”

If you have any information on this incident or saw what happened, please contact the Merseyside Police social media desk on Twitter @MerPolCC or Facebook ‘Merseyside Police Contact Centre’ using reference 24000340020.”

You can also contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111, or via their online form at: https://crimestoppers-uk.org/give-information/give-information

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