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The Police Officer Being Investigated Over The Death Of A Young Black Man Will Not Be Suspended

Rashan Charles, 20, died in July this year after being followed by a police officer into a shop in Dalston.

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The police officer being investigated over the death of Rashan Charles will not be suspended, the Met police have said.

Charles, a 20-year-old father of one, became unwell on July 22 after being followed into an east London shop by a police officer and a member of the public. He died later in hospital.

CCTV footage that seemed to show Charles putting something in his mouth caused outrage among those concerned by the use of force when the video was shared online. The next day, the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) launched an investigation into his death.

The watchdog said the officer had been placed on restricted duties, which will mean that he has been removed from work that involves contact with the public.

The decision to place the officer on restricted duties was taken by Deputy Assistant Commissioner Richard Martin.

In a statement, Martin said: "I fully understand the strength of public feeling about the tragic death of Rashan Charles in Hackney. All the circumstances surrounding his death are subject to independent scrutiny by the IPCC. Throughout this investigation both the officer concerned and the MPS have fully co-operated with the IPCC investigation and will continue to do so.

"I have carefully considered the IPCC's representations and the views of key partners in making my decision.

"The officer concerned will be office-based and have no direct contact with any member of the public whilst the investigation is ongoing.

"As always, the serving of a notice by the IPCC does not mean that misconduct has been proven against an officer."

Charles' family said in a statement to the Hackney Gazette: “We have learned the Metropolitan Police has decided not to suspend the officer who is seen on CCTV grabbing Rashan and throwing him to the ground on the night he died.

“This decision sends completely the wrong message about how seriously the Metropolitan Police take what happened to Rashan and we call on them to reconsider.

“Footage of this incident has been publicly available since July 22. It shows the unprovoked use of a great deal of force on a young man.

“Rashan died within minutes of that force being used, and we have not been satisfied that he received safe and prompt care from the police.

“Subsequent statements suggesting that Rashan ‘became unwell’ or that the officer was in some way ‘helping’ him are a distortion of what we can all see on-screen.

“We are disappointed and concerned that the simple reality of what is seen in the recording has not been translated into prompt and effective action by the police, CPS and IPCC: to suspend this officer and to investigate him as a suspect in possible criminal offences, as well as for gross misconduct.

“We will continue to press for this.”

Victoria Sanusi is a reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in London.

Contact Victoria Sanusi at victoria.sanusi@buzzfeed.com.

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