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Vol. 78/No. 30      August 25, 2014

Vigil marks 3rd anniversary
of killing by cops in London
LONDON — “Mark was executed in the streets by the Metropolitan Police. Someone should be held accountable,” Carole Duggan said as protesters gathered Aug. 4 for a vigil to commemorate the third anniversary of the killing of her nephew Mark Duggan by police.

Chanting “No Justice, no peace!” and “Who are the murderers? Police are the murderers!” more than 100 marched from Broadwater Farm Estate — a working-class high-rise residential area where Duggan lived in Tottenham, north London — to the location where the 29-year-old was killed by two gunshots after police stopped a cab he was traveling in.

Carole Duggan appealed for witnesses to come forward and pointed to a recent report by coroner Keith Cutler criticizing “the perception of collusion” in police accounts given to an inquest he headed. Last January, that inquest concluded that Mark’s killing had been “lawful,” despite also confirming that he was unarmed — contrary to police lies. The family has launched a legal appeal against the finding. “We want officer V53 to be stripped of his uniform,” Duggan said, “and to stand trial as a civilian charged with murder. … We’re here for all the families of those who have died at the hands of the police.”

Speakers included relatives of some of them: Marcia Rigg, sister of Sean Rigg; Kadisha Brown-Burrell, sister of Kingsley Burrell; Myrna Simpson, mother of Joy Gardner; and Janet Alder, sister of Christopher Alder.

To big applause, Rigg hailed the murder charges that were brought days earlier against a police officer accused of killing Azelle Rodney, who was shot six times in 2005. The indictment is among a small handful of charges against cops in more than 1,400 cases of people who have died in custody or at the hands of the police since 1990.

“I came because we all need to unite against injustice,” said Tahmina Hemati, who came with her friend Temi Mwale, both of them members of Get Outta the Gang as well as being active in the Justice for Mark Duggan campaign. “Ethnic minorities are especially affected by stop and search. Then there’s joint enterprise,” referring to charges based on being an “associate” of someone convicted of a crime, especially targeting working-class youth.

“There are too many breaking points in the community. If you don’t speak, you don’t get justice,” said Syed Ashan Ali, a worker at mobile phone company O2, originally from Pakistan, who came straight from work with his co-worker.

“I knew Mark. He wasn’t the bogeyman they created,” said creative arts teacher Jason Nwansi. “The way the media portrayed him, they dehumanized him.”

In another development, the Metropolitan Police has admitted that its Special Demonstration Squad gathered “inappropriate” information on families fighting the police over the deaths of their loved ones as it infiltrated political groups involved in the campaigns.
Related articles:
Protests say: Arrest the cop who killed Michael Brown!
Actions against police brutality spread across US
Thomaston, Ga., residents demand firing of officer
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