Why posters of this man who drowned in the River Aire are appearing around Leeds

Left: The poster on Boar Lane Right: The artwork by Rasheed Araeen
Left: The poster on Boar Lane Right: The artwork by Rasheed Araeen
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Large poster of a man's face have been put up across Leeds city centre, the reason why is a shocking tale from one of the unhappiest chapter's in the city's history.

The posters show the face of David Oluwale, whose body was pulled from the River Aire on May 4, 1969.

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He had been systematically harassed by two members of Leeds City Police force, Inspector Geoffrey Ellerker and Sergeant Kenneth Kitching.

A police cadet, Gary Galvin, acted as whistleblower and revealed the mistreatment of Mr Oluwale, leading to an investigation by Scotland Yard.

In November 1971 the two men went on trial for the manslaughter of Mr Oluwale.

Kitching and Ellerker were jailed for a series of assaults on Mr Oluwale at Leeds Assizes, but found not guilty of manslaughter at the direction of the judge.

Mr Justice Hinchcliffe concluded that there was no evidence to place them at the alleged scene of the crime, by the river at Warehouse Hill.

The image used on the posters was created by artist Rasheed Araeen.

The Remember Oluwale Memorial Association has posted them across the city as part of a series of events throughout April commemorating the 50th anniversary of Mr Oluwale's death.

Rasheed Araeen's work For Oluwale II is currently on display at contemporary art gallery The Tetley on Hunslet Road.

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Mr Araeen was shocked and deeply moved after reading about the death in 1971, and decided to make a work dedicated to his story,

The work comprises six photographic panels that document a previous version of the work plus two additional panels that provide further information about Oluwale alongside a letter of complaint from someone who protested against the display of the original version of the work in 1973.

The work is accompanied by a collection of press clippings, a scrapbook owned by the whistle-blowing police cadet Gary Galvin, and excerpts from plays and poetry relating to the death of David Oluwale made in the intervening years.

It is the first time the artwork has been displayed in the city and the exhibition will run until June 2, 2019