West Yorkshire Police officer investigated for assault after 17-year-old 'knelt on' outside Elland Road during Leeds United promotion celebrations

A police officer is being investigated on suspicion of assault after a 17-year-old boy was 'knelt on' during his arrest outside Elland Road.

Friday, 7th August 2020, 12:11 pm
Updated Friday, 7th August 2020, 12:14 pm

The teenager was arrested as fans gathered to celebrate Leeds United's promotion to the Premier League on July 17.

Footage shared widely on social media shows the boy being restrained on the ground by officers during his arrest.

In the footage an officer uses their knee, at one point, to restrain the teenager.

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A criminal investigation has been launched into the incident

The Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) has launched a criminal investigation into the incident following a voluntary referral from West Yorkshire Police.

The police officer involved will be interviewed on suspicion of common assault and also investigated for gross misconduct.

Investigators would like to speak to anyone who may have witnessed the incident at Elland Road at the time of the arrest, which happened at 5pm.

IOPC Regional Director Miranda Biddle said: “We understand why the images that were circulated caused considerable public concern.

"After the footage was shared on social media, a voluntary referral was made to us in relation to the conduct of the officer.

“Having examined a range of evidence including body worn video and initial accounts from the officers involved in the restraint, we have taken the decision that this is now a criminal investigation.

"A criminal investigation does not mean that criminal charges will necessarily follow

“It is vitally important that the circumstances of this incident are subject to an independent investigation so we can fully understand what happened and impartially determine the facts.

“We have already begun to gather evidence but would like to speak to anyone else who was at Leeds United’s ground at the same time for these celebrations and may have witnessed the incident.”

Witnesses can email [email protected] or ring 0300 303 5725.

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Thank you

Laura Collins