On the 30th July 2016 I decided to spend the afternoon and night in Ipswich, Suffolk and to do some cop blocking whilst there. After an earlier interaction that I had that day with two Police officers, PCs 1235 and 1908 outside Ipswich Town Football Club. I noticed that there were quite a few Police officers on patrol. These included Police Sergeant Oliver John Lawrence ALDRED 19, Police Constable Elizabeth FOGARTY 1894 (whose collar number has since changed to 1576) and PC Christopher MORETON 1630.
My initial interaction with the officers on duty was with Aldred when I noticed him on duty and peacefully filmed him from a distance. This provoked a quite strong reaction from him that I was causing him alarm and distress and a verbal threat from him that if I did not stop filming I would be arrested on suspicion of harassment. He grabbed my camera out of my hand and switched it off before making this threat which is why it cannot be heard on the recording. I initially complied with Aldred’s request but then changed my mind and continued filming.
This provoked a confrontation from Police Constable Moreton who decided that he too was fed up with my filming. He demanded that I give my details under section 50 of the Police Reform Act 2002. I stood my ground and refused to provide him with them and was then detained for 15 minutes whilst he carried out enquiries over the radio to confirm that I didn’t have a history of harassing officers based in Norfolk (which is somewhere I have had interactions with Police previously). He concluded that he was incorrect about his suspicions but warned me that if I didn’t stop filming or leave the area I would be getting issued with a section 35 direction to leave.
I continued filming and Moreton again approached me at this point quite fed up with my filming. He again used section 50 of the Police Reform Act 2002 to demand my details and warned me that this time I would definitely be getting arrested if I failed to provide them. Again I stood my ground and was arrested on suspicion of an offence under section 50 of the Police Reform Act 2002. I was also handcuffed by Moreton and dragged to Police Constable Fogarty’s car in a rather painful manner before being placed inside by Moreton. Moreton then sat next to me in the back whilst Fogarty took her seat in the driver’s seat. She then drove us to Martlesham Police Investigation Centre.
Whilst en route to the Police Investigation Centre I was in extreme pain from the lack of legroom. Moreton admitted that I was deliberately given limited legroom in order to prevent me from attacking the driver (Fogarty). I swore at Moreton whilst the vehicle was in motion and all doors and windows were closed. Moreton warned me about my conduct but I stood my ground and continued swearing. Moreton then informed me that I was now also under arrest on suspicion of an offence under section 5 of the Public Order Act 1986.
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Upon arrival at Martlesham PIC I was placed into the holding area for 15 minutes before a Custody Sergeant, Police Sergeant Heidi Bryanton became available. She booked me in at the charge desk and authorised my detention so that Moreton and Fogarty could do their witness statements. I was then placed in my cell by a Custody Detention Officer. After a few hours I had my fingerprints and photograph taken by another CDO and was again placed in my cell.
In the morning, I was taken to the charge desk by PS Steve Clark and charged with both offences by PC Toni Manning. Clark released me on bail with a condition not to enter the county of Suffolk unless attending court or a pre-planned legal appointment. I walked into the public waiting area and was then taken to Ipswich railway station by two Police officers where I got a bus home.
I attended Ipswich Magistrates Court and pleaded not guilty to both offences. I was given a trial date and released on unconditional bail. I attended court for my trial and the section 5 charge was dismissed before trial. After a trial I was acquitted of the section 50 offence on the basis that the prosecution were unable to prove that Moreton had reason to believe that my actions were anti-social behaviour.
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