Remembrance service for Ian Tomlinson

Ian Tomlinson memorial - one year on. Photo: Seb Wheeler

It is a year since the G20 protests drew thousands to the Square Mile. It is also the first anniversary of the death of newspaper seller Ian Tomlinson, who collapsed on Cornhill Street after being manhandled by a police officer.

Tomlinson was on his way home from work and had taken no part in the demonstration, but footage published  by the Guardian clearly showed him being attacked about the legs. Tomlinson managed to get back onto his feet although fell again, fatally, minutes later.

On Thursday there was a short commemoration by Julia Tomlinson and the Ian Tomlinson Family Campaign at the spot on which Mr Tomlinson, who lived in the East End, died. A one minute silence was held at 11am.

While the small number of people who gathered paid respect to Mr Tomlinson, they also shared concern for the way in which his death is being handled by the Metropolitan Police, the Independent Police Complaints Commission and the Crown Prosecution Service, which is still considering whether to bring charges.  The campaign claim that despite having promised a full examination as early as August 2009, these bodies have so far failed to provide an extensive explanation of Mr Tomlinson’s death.

Estelle du Boulay, a representative of the Campaign, said: “The family are still in the same position they were a year ago. They were waiting on an investigation then; they are waiting on an investigation now. The pain and frustration they are going through in suffering those delays is absolute torment for them.”

The gathering coincided with an open letter from the Campaign that called for “a heightened need for the statutory investigating body to be seen to be carrying out justice in a robust, transparent and timely manner to address public confidence… The Tomlinson family are still left with unanswered questions.”

Boulay explained that the postponement of an investigation “gives the impression there is a cover up going on. From the beginning there have been problems with this case.” The Met came under heavy criticism for its handling of the G20 demonstration,with the IPCC receiving nearly 300 complaints. . Boulay said: “The campaign is supporting the family to fight for justice for as long as it takes.”

By Seb Wheeler

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