Sacked G20 PC Simon Harwood accused of attacking and racially abusing girl, 12
THE disgraced police officer sacked over the death of Big Issue seller Ian Tomlinson has been accused of racially abusing and attacking a 12-year-old girl.
Simon Harwood allegedly beat Emilie Diakiese around the head and called her family “African village people”.
On Monday Harwood, who has been cleared of manslaughter, was sacked for using unnecessary force against Mr Tomlinson, who died after being pushed to the ground at the G20 protest in 2009.
Emilie, now 19, is suing the force for malicious prosecution, false imprisonment and assault.
The psychology student says Harwood attacked her for asking him to return her father’s mobile phone after he was wrongly arrested.
She claims he dragged her into a police car without shoes on, which injured her feet, punched her in the head and racially abused her.
She says it happened on January 6, 2006 when Harwood spotted her dad John walking in Lambeth, South London, and arrested him, confiscating his mobile phone and taking him to the family’s home.
Emilie, who is originally from the Democratic Republic of Congo, told a friend that Harwood accused them of being in the country illegally.
A phone call to the Home Office confirmed they were not, but she told the pal: “He seemed angry that he was wrong about us and continued to make racist abusive remarks saying, ‘You African village people’.”
As the PC was about to leave Emilie asked if her dad, who did not speak English very well, could have his mobile phone back.
She claims the officer then pushed her against the wall, tried to drag her down to the ground and handcuffed her. She said she was dragged into the back of a police car and her leg was gashed on the door.
Then she claims Harwood – who faced 10 complaints during 12 years in the Met and Surrey police forces – punched her several times in the head.
“I was terrified, screaming at him to let me go,” she said. “My wrists and arms were hurting so much from the handcuffs and my feet were bleeding. Then in the back of the car he started punching me in the back of the head.”
The family complained to the Met who wrote to them saying the claims were “discussed with the officer”.
Solicitor Jules Carey, of Tuckers Solicitors, who is representing Emilie’s family, said: “The Met recently admitted their vetting procedures were flawed. It is now time for them to admit that disciplinary procedures are also hopelessly inadequate.”
Scotland Yard said: “The public complaint was received on January 19, 2006 and it was locally resolved. The complainant said PC Harwood punched her, accused her of forging immigration papers and told her to go back to her own country. We have received correspondence from her solicitors.”