Violence Erupts At Kill The Bill Protest In Bristol As Protesters Clash With Police
A Kill The Bill protest in Bristol turned violent and reportedly left police officers with broken arms and ribs.
The demonstration took place yesterday, March 21, in Bristol’s city centre and while it started out peaceful, things took a turn for the worst leading to a police station being targeted, officers being seriously injured and several police vehicles being set on fire.
Missiles and fireworks were thrown at officers while being verbally abused as well.
Yesterday’s protest comes in the wake of the government’s new Police, Crime, Sentencing and Courts Bill which is being described as a ‘mammoth piece of legislation’.
The bill will increase police powers surrounding protests, meaning they’ll be able to impose a start and finish time as well as setting noise limits. These bill would also allow this rules to be applied to a protest involving just one person, BBC News reports.
If a person was to ignore these restrictions, they could be fined up to £2,500.
Discussing yesterday’s violent protest, chairman of the Avon and Somerset Police Federation Andy Roebuck likened protestors to a ‘mob of animals’.
As per Metro Online, he said:
Disgusting scenes in Bristol by a mob of animals who are injuring police officers, members of the public and damaging property.
Avon and Somerset Police Federation are attending stations to support officers. We have officers with suspected broken arms and ribs. This is so wrong.
Smashing buildings in our city centre, vandalising vehicles, attacking our police will do nothing to lessen the likelihood of the Bill going through, Roebuck added according to Sky News.
Meanwhile, Home Secretary Priti Patel described the ordeal as ‘unacceptable’. She wrote on Twitter yesterday, ‘Unacceptable scenes in Bristol tonight. Thuggery and disorder by a minority will never be tolerated. Our police officers put themselves in harms way to protect us all.’
It’s currently unknown if anyone has been arrested in connection to the violent protest, but police have warned that ‘those responsible for offences will be identified and brought to justice.’
Tensions have been high between the British population and the police regarding protests in the wake of the vigil that took place for Sarah Everard at Clapham Common, London, last weekend.
The vigil had been cancelled by police in the hours running up to the event, but people still attended. Police were then criticised for it’s handling of the situation after images surfaced online of a woman being pinned to the ground and handcuffed and arguably being quite aggressive towards the vigil’s attendees.
This was the compared to how the police handled a football rally in Glasgow just days prior to the vigil where police had escorted thousands of football fans through the city, many of whom were not abiding by social distancing rules and/or wearing face masks.
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