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IAN TOMLINSON FAMILY STATEMENT AND SOLICITOR REACTION FOLLOWING PC SIMON HARWOOD NOT GUILTY VERDICT
Thursday 12 July 2012
Tomlinson Family statement following PC Simon Harwood not guilty verdict:
In April 2009, along with everyone else, we saw the shocking video of Ian being violently assaulted by PC Harwood just minutes before he died.
After the unlawful killing verdict at the inquest last year – we expected to hear a guilty verdict today. The NOT guilty verdict really hurts.
But this is not the end, – we are not giving up on justice for Ian. There has to be one formal and final answer to the question “who killed Ian?”. And we will now pursue this in the civil court.
The last three years have been a really hard uphill battle. We have had to deal with many obstacles, set backs and emotions on the way. It has been hard to keep going sometimes, it feels hard to keep going today. We do take strength from the support that we receive from so many members of the public. Thank you.
And thank you also to Lucy Apps for the compassion you showed to our dad when you tried to save his life and comfort him on Cornhill that day.
Jules Carey of Tuckers Solicitors said:
“PC Harwood may have been acquitted of manslaughter by this jury, but another jury, at the inquest a year ago, found that Ian Tomlinson had been unlawfully killed. It is impossible for this family to understand these two, apparently contradictory, verdicts.
“Ian Tomlinson’s family have not given up on justice.”
INQUEST’s response to the verdict, including background information, can be found here
‘I was already working with INQUEST, which is the organisation who monitor deaths in custody, and at one AGM I told the audience that what happened to these people [killed in police custody like Chistopher Alder, Roger Sylvester and many others] could happen to any of us. And then a couple of years later, I was standing in front of them again but now it had happened to my cousin. So my family and me were now “users” of Inquest. It shows you that none of us are immune – here am I, Benjamin Zephaniah, patron of INQUEST and client of INQUEST at the same time.’
– Benjamin Zephaniah