A 14-year-old black schoolboy was handcuffed and forced to the ground by police officers, prompting fears from the child’s mother that her son would be “the next George Floyd”.
De-shaun Joseph was stopped by police and wrestled to the floor as he was walking home in Croydon, south London, after officers said his clothing matched the description of a suspect who had stolen a mobile phone.
While the teenager, who suffers from asthma, was pinned to the floor by officers, he managed to shout his mother’s telephone number to a passer-by who was filming the incident.
Janet Joseph received a call about her son from the stranger, and when she saw him lying face-down on the floor, feared that he could be “the next George Floyd”.
De-shaun said that the officers “stopped him for no reason” and that he has been feeling mentally traumatized since the incident.
He told ITV News: “I was upset and scared. I thought I was going to die.
“I was curious because I have not done anything wrong and they just stopped me for no reason.”
Ms Joseph said it was “every parent’s worst nightmare” and that officers used “excessive force” against her young son.
She said: “It’s the same old story – every Black boy fits the description.
“There’s no excuse for what they did to my son and the excessive force they used on a 14-year-old Black boy.”
A Metropolitan Police spokesperson said: “A primary school boy had been robbed of his mobile phone by a group of teenagers who intimated they had a knife.
“A teenage boy was stopped after officers saw his clothing matched the description given of one suspect.
“He was detained for the purposes of a search, at which point he verbally abused officers and became obstructive. Once he was eliminated as a possible suspect, he was given a written record of the stop and search and allowed on his way.
An initial review of the incident, including body-worn video, has been conducted by the Met’s Directorate of Professional Standards, and no misconduct is apparent. However, a public complaint has been made and will be thoroughly investigated. ”