CCTV released of officers inside police station under attack during Bristol riot

Protesters on a roof throw objects down at police outside Bridewell Police Station
Protesters on a roof throw objects down at police outside Bridewell Police Station (PA Wire)
18:34pm, Tue 20 Apr 2021
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CCTV footage has been released showing officers inside a police station under attack during a riot in Bristol.

A total of 42 people have been arrested, with a 14-year-old boy also attending a voluntary interview, in connection with the incident which followed a peaceful Kill the Bill protest in the city.

The riot, on March 21, saw around 500 people march on Bridewell police station, set fire to police vehicles and attack the station.

Avon and Somerset Police said on Tuesday that 44 officers were assaulted during the incident, with 39 sustaining injuries as a result.

One other officer was also injured but not from an assault, a spokesman said.

The force previously corrected a statement it issued the day after the riot, which wrongly claimed officers had suffered broken bones and one had sustained a punctured lung in the disorder.

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On Tuesday, Avon and Somerset Police released 14 new images of people officers are seeking to identify as part of their investigation.

It also published footage from the National Police Air Service showing a police van under attack as an officer reverses from a crowd of people.

CCTV footage from inside Bridewell police station as it was attacked was also released.

Detective Chief Superintendent Carolyn Belafonte said: “It’s now four weeks since the shameful scenes outside one of our neighbourhood police stations.

“The images which dominated much of the news the following day shocked not just people of Bristol but much of the entire nation.

“I know all the officers and staff working on the inquiry remain totally committed to identifying and bringing to justice those who played a part in the disorder.

“Thousands of hours of digital media including CCTV and mobile phone footage have been viewed and significant progress has already been made.

“The public response to our appeals so far has been really positive with 653 calls made to our control room and 390 submissions made through our website.”

Police vans were set on fire during the riot (Andrew Matthews/PA) (PA Wire)

The force said it will cost £5,676 to repair one of the two vans set on fire during the riot, and £25,000 to replace the other.

Damage to the police station has been calculated to cost £41,350, the force said.

DCS Belafonte added: “The financial costs of the disorder are substantial but ultimately it’s the communities of Bristol which pay the price – after all, it’s taxpayers’ money which could have been spent on safeguarding and protecting our communities.

“We can’t let the people responsible get away with what they did. They are a disgrace and need to face the consequence of their actions.

“We have 35 people on our online gallery who we want to identify and I urge anyone who recognises any of them to contact us.”

Anyone with information is asked to contact the force on 101, providing the call handler with the letter associated with the person on the online gallery.

They can also use an online form on the force’s website, or contact the independent charity Crimestoppers anonymously.

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