False arrest, false imprisonment and assault claimed against Met Police
Our client was in the middle of a row with his girlfriend outside their South London flat. She had taken his car keys to stop him leaving and he had just retrieved them when two police officers arrived on the scene. He went to get in his car and without warning was sprayed with CS gas and severely beaten by the officers using their Casco truncheons.
Our client lost consciousness and was bundled into police transport and taken to the local police station. His injuries from the truncheon blows required hospital treatment.
No interview was held and when he returned to the Police Station to answer bail about a month later he was charged with Affray. The allegation was that he had fought with the police officers. His case went to a trial in the Crown Court. The officers accepted they had struck him 30 – 40 times. A doctor gave evidence that it was only because he was so well built that no bones had been broken. The judge directed that he should be found not guilty.
Moss & Co obtained legal aid to bring a claim for false arrest, false imprisonment assault, and malicious prosecution. They prepared civil proceedings for trial. No realistic offers were made until very shortly before the trial when the case was settled. Compensation and costs came to over £25,000.
This case represents a common scenario. An unnecessary arrest leads to charges to justify the police officers’ actions and use of their truncheons. The injuries are all on the defendant who is acquitted at trial. Many defendants leave it at that. If the medical evidence is strong and there are other witnesses to what happened a successful claim for false arrest can be brought.