Met Police launch investigation after woman reported being flashed at Clapham vigil
Mar 15 2021
Johnson said the Metropolitan Police Commissioner Cressida Dick had committed to reviewing the police action and Interior minister Priti Patel had ordered a review to learn lessons on how to improve policing of such events in future.
Another protester is seen with a police officer during Saturday's the memorial, held to express outrage over the killing of Sarah Everard.
However, she said that the vigil had largely been peaceful, with many people just wanting to lay flowers in commemoration of the dead woman.
Boris Johnson also promised several reviews into the policing of a vigil for the woman on Saturday night, after male officers were seen scuffling with and restraining female demonstrators - further souring the national mood.
Mourners shouted "shame on you" at police. "I received assurances from the Metropolitan Police last week that the vigil would be policed sensitively".
Hundreds of people converged on the south London park despite an official vigil being called off earlier in the day due to police warnings over coronavirus restrictions.
The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, also described the scenes as "unacceptable", tweeting: "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".
"The Duchess wanted to pay her respects to Sarah and her family", a Palace source said, reports The Sun.
She added: "I know Lambeth Borough officers made efforts to compromise with the organisers but were overruled from high up".
Footage from the event posted on social media by attendee Deborah Hermanns showed police pushing and detaining people as they attempted to break up the crowds which had gathered at a bandstand in a park in the south of the city - near where Everard had disappeared.
'We are aware. that she tried to report the incident at the time to officers in the area -this will be looked at, ' a Scotland Yard spokesperson said. Atkins said policing large-scale events is hard, especially in a pandemic, but said police should "explain their actions to the wider public".
Labour leader Keir Starmer said the Commissioner should not quit, but condemned the policing on Saturday as "wrong".
"Hundreds of people were packed tightly together, posing a very real risk of easily transmitting Covid-19", she said. While police are operationally independent, the London mayor has oversight of Britain's biggest force.
He added: 'It is vital that these events are not allowed to undermine the powerful calls since Sarah's (alleged) murder for meaningful action to finally stop men inflicting violence on women.
The circumstances surrounding Ms. Everard's death have shocked people across the country and damaged the reputation of Dame Cressida, who was hailed as the new face of policing when she took over as the Met's first female and first openly gay commissioner in 2017. "Unfortunately, a small minority did not", she said.
On Wednesday (March 10), the police discovered bodily remains in a wooded area of Ashford town in Kent, and on Friday (March 12) confirmed, through the use of dental records, that the body belonged to Everard.