Saturday, 28 May 2011

Petition for legislative reform in regard to deaths in police custody.



"We believe that equitable dispensation justice in the UK must be done and be seen to be done if the general public are to enjoy high levels of trust and confidence in the fair administration of justice. Further we believe that all peoples regardless of race, gender, colour or creed should be considered equal citizens under the law. Suspicious deaths in custody and the abusive process of investigation and judication act as a drain on public confidence and cause deep scepticism and resentment in the fair administration of justice. The poor quality and speed of independent investigations conducted by the Independent Police Complaints Commission and an Inquest process that is not fit for purpose both critically fail to protect or support the rights of victims or their families.  

Neither of these statutory processes empowers the victims’ families in their desperate search for the truth. Public confidence and respect for the rule of law are vital. We believe there is little if any confidence in the present legal process of investigation and inquest. Holding to  legal account those institutions and individuals in whom the public entrust the care and safety of their loved ones is essential for maintaining public confidence in the judicial process. 

Where suspicious deaths in custody do occur; transparency, openness and ensuring that the victims’ families are legally enabled to seek the truth and ensure those held responsible are held to account is of critical importance. We have no confidence in the current systems of investigation and inquest. We believe that the vast majority of the British public would support urgent and immediate legislative and policy reform that can restore public confidence in the criminal justice system."

We the undersigned demand that the Prime Minister:

·        Hold an independent public inquiry into all suspicious deaths in custody. We need an urgent inquiry into cases such as those of David Emanuel (aka Smiley Culture), Kingsley Burrell-Brown, Wayne Hamilton, Ian Tomlinson, Mikey Powell, Justice for Habib 'Paps' Ullah Sean Rigg and including the deaths of children in custody such as Gareth Myatt.
·        Introduce reforms that result in the  immediate and routine suspension of all police officers involved in cases of deaths in police custody including  those of David Emanuel (aka Smiley Culture) and Kingsley Burrell-Brown.
·        Ensure that IPCC fast track their investigation into the deaths of David Emanuel (aka Smiley Culture) and Kingsley Burrell-Brown and ensure that in future all investigations of deaths in custody are concluded in a timely and transparent manner.
·        Reform and strengthen the powers and independence of the IPCC. For example ensuring that no member of the IPCC can have worked for the police or any other criminal justice agency where there is a clear an obvious conflict of interest. In addition: introduce independent community investigators that can be utilised in controversial cases where public confidence is an issue.
·        Implement legislation so that any professional who has someone die whilst in their custody and where there are no independent witnesses present, must take a public lie detector test as part of the IPCC investigation

·        Introduce mobile video technology so that all police officers must record arrests using a mobile video device to ensure that there is an accurate account of events.

Petition created by Merlin Emanuel and Lee Jasper:


Thursday, 26 May 2011

Kingsley Burrell Brown March for Truth and Justice-message from Kingsley's sister

Kedisha Brown-Burrell 
Message from Kedisha Brown-Burrell (Kingsley's sister)  

I'm not just calling on ethnic minority but global majority to bridge the gap between institutionalised racism and custodial deaths.

    As a community at large we need to join forces in support of my late brother Kingsley Burrell’s Campaign as one step forward in challenging current legislation. Out of many we are one strong diverse culture with strong religious beliefs. Therefore I take this opportunity to invite one and all to take part in the March for Justice on Saturday 2nd July 2011 to be held in Birmingham.

    We owe it to ourselves to guide and protect our past present and future generations in breaking through the chains of mental and physical slavery and I urge you all to attend in order show your support in this ongoing fight against inequalities in Great Britain.
Saturday, July 2 · 12:00pm - 5:00pm 
Handsworth Birmingham
More details to follow but in the meantime can you send out invites to all your contacts.
We will shortly have flyers available and we need you to help us distribute them nationwide so that this march will be at least as big as the March 4 Justice in April.

EVENT PAGE:!/event.php?eid=111612942255660

COACH TRAVEL FROM LONDON:!/event.php?eid=222463241103744




Wednesday, 25 May 2011

From The Voice Online: New march for justice planned

Unity: The first March 4 Justice saw representatives from many family campaigns against deaths in custody, unite in their grief and pursuit of justice.
FOLLOWING A well-attended rally on April 16, another march is planned to demand justice over the deaths of Smiley Culture and Kingsley Burrell following contact with the police.
Kingsley Burrell's sister, 27-year-old Kadisha Brown-Burrell from Birmingham said: "We are awaiting another coroner's court hearing on May 5 and hopefully they'll release my brother's body once and for all, as well as provide the true reason for his death.
"We plan on marching in Birmingham on July 2 and are expecting more people than we had on the first march."
"I've had professionals contacting me from the NHS who want partake in the march. They said that they too are fed-up with institutional racism in the police force."
Kingsley Burrell’s family say that he was in good health before coming into contact with the West Midlands police on March 27 when he was detained under the Mental Health Act.
She revealed that the family is struggling to come to terms with his death and are determined to get justice.
Leading black campaigner Lee Jasper and Maxie Hayles, chairman of the Birmingham Racial Attacks Monitoring Unit are helping to organise the march.
Lee Jasper, the former race adviser to ex mayor of London, Ken Livingstone, told The Voice; “We will not rest until the Government agrees to a full and independent public inquiry into all suspicious deaths in custody.”
He added: “We want to keep pressure on the government in regards to the large number of death in custody.”
Independent Police Complaints Commissioner (IPCC) Mike Franklin said: "The IPCC investigation into the death of David Emanuel is progressing and we are committed to thoroughly examining all the available evidence to try to independently establish what happened.
“We now have detailed accounts from all the officers who were at the house when Mr Emanuel died and medical professionals who treated him. We have commissioned various forensic examinations and scientific tests. We will continue to pursue all possible lines of enquiry.
“Our objective is to get the facts and make them public but this will take time and, until we are in a position to make our findings known, I would ask people not to rush to judgment."
An IPCC spokesman said that in relation to the Kingsley Burrell case, “the investigation is still ongoing”.

Published: 29 April 2011

From the Voice Online: Family's anguish over death of man taken by police

EXCLUSIVE By Merissa Richards

QUESTIONS: Kingsley, hours before he died in hospital

A FATHER of two from Birmingham has died following contact with police, two weeks after the death of reggae singer Smiley Culture.
Kingsley Burrell Brown, 29, of Hockley, was picked up by West Midlands Police on March 27 and admitted into Mary Seacole mental institute, where his family say he was not allowed to speak to them.
He was later transferred, on March 30, to a mental health facility at Queen Elizabeth Hospital.
When he arrived at Mary Seacole, Brown alleged he had been beaten up by the police. When he arrived at the second hospital he was in a critical condition. His family believe he was also beaten en route to the hospital.
Brown was pronounced dead yesterday (March 31) afternoon. His family said the coroner contacted them this morning and has not been able to provide a reason for his death.

Speaking exclusively to The Voice, Kingsley Brown’s sister Kadisha, 27, said: “My brother was in a gangland area and he called the police because he was with his five-year-old son and was worried for their safety. He had seen some men he believed were out to get him.
“He was a lovely person, not the sort of person to be involved in trouble; he has just completed his security training course.
“He called the police, but when they came they said he was paranoid. However, CCTV footage proves otherwise. He was taken to a mental hospital and en route he was beaten up by the police, and his son witnessed it. His son told us that the police beat his dad.
“When I went to see him he had three massive bumps and a swelling to the head and the brain.
“The only reason they allowed us to see him is because we insisted. After this visit he was refused the right to see us and later taken to Queen Elizabeth hospital, where he was put on life support machine.
She added: “We are taking it further and we are not letting this slide without a fight. My innocent brother’s life has been taken. He was not a criminal; he was a good father and a working man. He called the police for help but he died in their hands. “We want justice.”

His grief-stricken mother Janet Brown, 50, added: “I don’t know why the police took him there. He has never suffered with mental health issues. What they have done to my son, I don’t know. I’m studying criminology and I never expected this to happen to my one and only son. You have good police and bad police, the ones who have done this to my son are pure evil.”
In response to Brown’s death, Maxie Hayles, chairman of the Birmingham Racial Attacks Monitoring Unit, said: “The West Midlands Police have got a lot of questions to answer and we want an open and transparent investigation by the IPCC into the death of this young man. We will leave no stone unturned until we get to the root of it, to see that justice is done.”
West Midlands Police said in a statement: ‘We can confirm that we are investigating the circumstances surrounding the hospitalisation of a man with a serious medical condition following dealings with the police.
‘At approximately 1.30pm on Sunday, 27 March, officers were alerted – by the ambulance service – to reports of a man being threatened with a firearm. When officers attended the address on Icknield Port Road, they discovered a 29-year-old man in an agitated state.
‘Initial enquiries indicated that no firearms offences had occurred. The man was detained under the Mental Health Act and taken to hospital. Three days later (Wednesday, 30 March), officers were called to a mental health facility in the Winson Green area of Birmingham, following reports of a man threatening staff with improvised weapons.

‘The man was restrained and transferred to hospital. He was then placed under hospital care and became critically ill some time later.
‘As is routine in such circumstances, the matter will be referred to the Independent Police Complaints Commission for assessment, as the man had previously been dealt with by police.’
An IPCC spokesman later told The Voice in a statement: ‘The IPCC is to independently investigate contact between West Midlands Police and a 29-year-old man who died on Thursday, 31 March, 2011...
‘An independent investigation has begun. The IPCC is in the process of contacting the family to arrange meeting them to explain our role and the scope of our investigation.’
Sue Turner, chief executive of Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health NHS Foundation Trust told The Voice in a statement: ‘There will be a full and thorough investigation into the circumstances surrounding the death of a 29-year-old man, who was detained under the Mental Health Act, on Wednesday (March 30).
‘The trust will assist and support any other inquiries arising from this tragic incident, and we are seeking relevant information from University Hospitals Birmingham NHS Foundation Trust, West Midlands Ambulance Service, in conjunction with the police inquiry to ensure that we can gain a full, factual picture of what happened during this incident.
‘Clearly, this is a very unusual set of circumstances. Peter Lewis, our medical director, today met with the man’s family for the first of what will be regular meetings to work closely with the family and keep them informed as our investigation unfolds. ‘Our thoughts go out to the family at this difficult time.’

Published: 01 April 2011 at