London police settle with man struck by officer at 2010 protest
September 16, 2023 08:24 PM
London's Metropolitan Police has apologised and reached a settlement with a man who sustained a brain injury after an officer hit his head with a baton during a protest more than a decade ago.
Alfie Meadows was injured on December 9, 2010, when he was a 20-year-old student at a protest against university tuition fee hikes.
He was later accused of violent disorder during the demonstration in central London before being unanimously acquitted by a jury.
The Met Police said in a statement that Meadows received "very serious injuries" when an officer "struck him on the head with their baton".
"Although the situation in Parliament Square was chaotic and threatening we acknowledge that Mr Meadows was protesting peacefully and the use of force against him was unjustified," the Met Police said.
It added that the officer who struck Meadows could not be identified and "has not been held to account for their actions".
The Met said it had apologised to Meadows in June and settled a civil action following a claim he made in August 2020.
The police did not disclose the financial terms of the settlement but British media reported that it includes a payout that could run to six figures.
The police also said that "to help prevent such an incident ever occurring again", since 2010 it had introduced body cameras to film interventions and improved self-defence training for officers.