Police Commissioner Cressida Dick defended the actions of police officers at the Sarah Everard vigil in Clapham Common yesterday as she said she would not resign.
The troupe was heavily criticized today for their actions the night before when police officers were filmed pulling women away from a bandstand where Sarah had been left with countless honors.
But when the Mayor of London Sadiq Khan added his vote to call on the armed forces for a full and independent investigation, Cressida Dick said she “rightly” felt that this was an “illegal gathering” which “represent a significant risk to human health”. .
She said she would not resign if increasingly asked to resign and that she was “more determined, no less” to lead the force.
On Sky News, she said, “I understand why so many people wanted to come and show their respect and make a statement about it
“Indeed, if it had been legal, I would have been there, I would have been at a vigil.
“Six hours from yesterday was really quiet and peaceful. Very few police officers around, respectful, people who lay flowers, don’t gather, and a non-breaking vigil.
“Unfortunately we later had a really large crowd gathering, a lot of speeches, and as far as I can see my team was right to believe that this is now an illegal gathering that poses a significant risk to the health of the population according to the regulations Represents people.
“A really insidious position for our officers to find themselves in, but they then tried to explain to people to deal with people, to get people to break away from this illegal gathering, and many, many Humans did. Unfortunately, a small minority did not. “
When asked what she thought when she saw pictures of the scene last night, she added, “I would not have wanted a vigil in memory of Sarah to end with these scenes.
“That’s why I said this morning that, from all I can say, I wasn’t there, but from all I can say, my officers – in a very difficult position, as they have been in surveillance over and over again last year of coronavirus have done restrictions, compliance with the law, impartiality and fairness.
“But of course we try to use common sense and discretion and when people don’t understand the law we try to help them understand, engage and speak before we ever turn to enforcement, but that’s why I said , we didn’t want to. ” To end like this, let’s do a retrospective. “
London Mayor Sadiq Khan asked for a full independent investigation, adding, “Last week I urged the government and police to work with the organizers of the vigil to clear the law and find a way to resolve it Legally and Safely – On Friday, a High Court judge made it clear that there is a window through which a path for a safe vigil can be arranged.
“I received assurances from the Metropolitan Police last week that the vigil will be closely monitored. I believe it was not.
“I asked the commissioner and the deputy commissioner to come to the town hall today to explain yesterday’s events and the days before you. I am not satisfied with the explanation you have given.”