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Moment black teenager, 14, forced to the ground by Met police officers after being mis-targeted

Written by Javed Iqbal

Moment, black teenager, 14, was forced to the ground and handcuffed by Met police officers after he was mistakenly targeted while walking home from school

  • De-Shaun Joseph, 14, was mistakenly stopped before being forced to the ground
  • The schoolboy in London, who is asthmatic, said ‘I thought I was going to die’
  • His mother said ‘It’s the same old story – every black boy fits the description’
  • Police said “no dishonesty is apparent” but that there would be an investigation

A black schoolboy was scared for his life after he was forced to the ground by police in an erroneous stop and search.

De-Shaun Joseph, 14, was handcuffed and pinned to the ground Metropolitan police when he went home from school in Croydon, south London.

Officers said he matched the description of a robbery suspect – a young black man in a blue hoodie.

De-Shaun was wearing his school uniform with a gray top over when he was stopped outside Blackhorse Road Station.

He said officers forced him up against a wall, handcuffed him and took his phone without explanation before putting him to the ground.

Police held De-Shaun – who is asthmatic – face down with his hands behind his back as they knelt on top of him, he claimed.

He told ITV News: ‘I thought I should die.’

De-Shaun managed to shout his mother’s mobile number to a spectator who could contact her and tell her what had happened.

Janet Joseph ran to where police held De-Shaun and were in tears over the incident.

Janet feared her son would become the next George Floyd, saying that what De-Shaun went through was’ all parents’ worst nightmare. ‘

She said: ‘It’s the same old story – every black boy fits the description.

De-Shaun Joseph, 14, was forced to the ground by police without – he said they gave him no explanation

‘There is no excuse for what they did to my son and the excessive force they used on a 14-year-old black boy.’

The Met later released De-Shaun without arrest and admitted that they had detained the wrong person.

A spokesman for the Met Police said: ‘Police were called at. 17.17 on Thursday 23rd June after a primary school boy was robbed of his mobile phone by a group of teenagers who suggested they had a knife in Woodside Green, Croydon.

‘The officers responded and conducted an area search.

‘A teenage boy was stopped in Blackhorse Road at. 17.27, after officers saw his clothes matched the description of a man in the suspect group.

‘He was detained for the purpose of a search, after which he verbally abused officers and became obstructive. When he was eliminated as a possible suspect, he was given a written record of the stop and search and was allowed to leave. ‘

Police held De-Shaun - who is asthmatic - face down with his hands behind his back while officers knelt on top of him.  He told ITV News (pictured): 'I thought I was going to die.'

Police held De-Shaun – who is asthmatic – face down with his hands behind his back while officers knelt on top of him. He told ITV News (pictured): ‘I thought I was going to die.’

De-Shaun was wearing his black and yellow school uniform with a gray top at the time

Chief Inspector Richard Berns of the Task Force on Violent Crime said “no dishonesty is obvious”, but added that there would be an investigation into a complaint.

He said: ‘Our officers patrol every day to prevent violence and seek out those who would harm others.

‘Officers responded to reports of a robbery involving a young victim and had to carry out their’ on the street ‘investigation under very challenging circumstances after some spectators began directing verbal abuse at them.

‘All officers understand that their actions are subject to control. An initial review of the incident, including body-worn video, has been conducted by Met’s Directorate of Professional Standards, and there appears to be no misdemeanor.

‘However, a public complaint has been lodged which will be thoroughly investigated by the professional standard unit.’

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Javed Iqbal

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