Black Man Stopped By Police As He Was “Not Dressed For Climate”
A black man who was wearing a coat was stopped by metropolitan police officers who said he was “not dressed for the climate”; the man was detained in what the police described as “an area well known for drug dealing” in Croydon, South London. A video of the incident was shared on the social media platform TikTok and has been viewed more than 400,000 times, showing one police officer saying, “you’re not dressed for the climate”, while another officer adds that the man’s outfit “just seems odd”. Read on for further information on this incident.
The police have responded saying that the video footage only shows a part of the incident that took place, and they asked the public “not to rush to judgement”. The video was filmed by the man who was detained, in which he says that he will take his coat off if the police buy him a new one. He also says, “Who tells me how to dress?”
Watch the full video of the incident here:
The caption under the video is as follows:
“Today I was being harassed by these 3 illiterate officers, giggling like kids when they were asking me idiotic questions like what am I wearing & why I look like I do. This bullying tactic they use is to get guys like me reacting a way they want so they can arrest me. This needs to stop.”
A statement from the Metropolitan Police was released saying that the man was “wearing several layers of clothing despite the warm weather… [he] became hostile and refused to account for what he was doing”.
Detective Chief Superintendent Lee Hill said, “This shows only a small part of this incident and we would ask people not to rush to judgement. In this instance a formal complaint has been received and is being handled in accordance with the Police Reform Act. This will include a review of all the available footage, including the officer’s body-worn video. Our officers have to conduct themselves in the most challenging of circumstances and it is right their actions should be subject to public scrutiny.”
Since the incident, the police have faced further accusation of racism, especially as they already face legal action for carrying out a strip search on a 15-year-old black girl while she was on her period.
After searching the man, who was “on his way to work after a shopping trip to buy toilet rolls”, “nothing was found and the man went on his way”.
Detective Chief Superintendent Lee Hill further commented, “In this instance a formal complaint has been received and is being handled in accordance with the Police Reform Act. This will include a review of all the available footage, including the officer’s body-worn video. Our officers have to conduct themselves in the most challenging of circumstances and it is right their actions should be subject to public scrutiny.”
According to statistics reported by Metro, “black people are nine times more likely to be stopped and searched by police than white people, official figures for England and Wales in 2019-2020 show.
The incident and the video have sparked a lot of public outrage at the fact that a man is being stopped and searched only because the police officers feel that it is a warm day, and he should not be wearing such a big coat or “layers”.
An investigation into the incident is being carried out, so we can only wait to see the results; however, that does not take away the experience people like the man in this video had to face. In fact, it is no wonder many people of colour have their guard up and seem “hostile” when being questioned and searched as they are, because it is only them who generally get stopped.