Two Kent police officers have been accused of assaulting a man whilst unlawfully detaining him after mistakenly accusing him of driving a stolen vehicle.
The two officers are PC 13462 (male) and PC 13170 (female) shown below from images taken by the vicitm.
Matthew Gayle, a 40 year old English/Jamaican businessman from Kent, was driving his Volkswagen Golf vehicle when he noticed a police car that he felt was following him.
Matthew continued his short journey, apprehensive of the following police vehicle which had not made any attempt to stop him.
When Matthew stopped and parked his car, one of the police officers (PC 13462) approached him and yanked opened his car door (so severely the handle broke), he then snatched Matthews car keys from the ignition and shouted, “This vehicle is stolen, stay in your car!”
Matthew was shocked at this groundless allegation, knowing full well he was the legal owner and that his vehicle was road legal.
Matthew stepped out of his vehicle, he had done nothing wrong. One of the officers immediately stepped towards Matthew into what Matthew felt was his personal space. Matthew politely told the officer to ‘step back‘ out of his personal space as per Covid guidelines.
The officer then forcefully grabbed Matthew and dragged him to the floor causing Matthew to bang his head and sustain injuries to his hands and body. The officers then forcefully removed Matthews phone from his hand, cracking the screen. It was raining and Matthew was drenched by the assault.
The police officers then cuffed Matthew and (unlawfully) detaining him, putting him in the back of their police car.
During this detention, Matthew told the police officer that he felt dizzy from banging his head and requested an ambulance. The officer laughed and said, ‘call it yourself‘.
The police officers then carried out their ‘checks‘ and soon realised they had made a big mistake, the car was not stolen. They realised that Matthew was completely innocent of any suspected wrongdoing and was the legal owner of the vehicle.
The police released him with no charge, and no apology.
Matthew later went to the hospital and was treated for his injuries.
A complaint was submitted to Kent police who replied;
Good morning Mr Gayle,
We have received the voicemail messages you left with the department, in relation to the complaint you raised to Kent Police. An attempt was made to contact you today by telephone but we were unable to get through. To reassure you that your complaint has been received along with the information you provided at the time, this email has been sent.
To determine the best course of action, all complaints are assessed before being allocated for investigation. Due to the nature of the allegations it can take a while for this assessment to be completed. Once your complaint has been assessed, it will be recorded and a reference number provided to you, and then an Investigating Officer will be assigned to your case file.
A member of the Professional Standards Department will be in contact with you to provide an update as soon as possible. In the meantime, please let us know if you have any further queries or would like to provide any other information to assist with your complaint.
Professional Standards Department | Kent Police
Grugeon House, Police Headquarters, Sutton Road, Maidstone, Kent, ME15 9BZ
UKCP contacted Kent Police who gave the following response;
Police are aware of this incident and a complaint is currently being reviewed by Kent Police’s Professional Standards Department. It would be both wrong and unhelpful to draw conclusions about the outcome of a complaint before it has been reviewed in its entirety.