A post event investigation is now underway by the Metropolitan Police Service following the disorder in Hyde Park.
Officers had been policing the park from 15:00hrs on Tuesday, 19 July, after a large number of people gathered for a spontaneous water fight. Additional officers were called to assist as the crowds grew to around 2,000 people.
Officers remained dealing with the incident until the crowds dispersed at around 02:20hrs on Wednesday, 20 July.
Commander BJ Harrington, speaking about the policing operation last night, said:
"Our officers took action to step in and protect the public and themselves after the crowd attempted to set up a sound system. Concerned for the potential safety implications officers stepped in to negotiate with them. At that stage our officers came under attack, resulting in one suffering stab wounds and another who suffered a head injury. In total five officers were injured.”
"Officers were mobilised as part of a graduated response to encourage the crowds to leave the park. Part of that involved using the powers available to us under the Public Order Act and the Anti-social Behaviour and Crime Act, and that’s when we deployed in riot gear. The action taken was based on serious concerns for the public and our officers. At least three members of the public were injured in the park.”
"We are now running a post event investigation – I know that there is a lot of footage available, including helicopter footage and CCTV. If you have any footage that may help, or any information, then please get in touch with us.”
"What took place wasn’t a group of people out enjoying the sunshine, but crime and disorder which is quite simply unacceptable. Officers are out and about on duty today and we want everyone in London to have a safe and enjoyable day.”
"If people are going to go along to unlicensed or spontaneous events then please think very carefully, they are simply not safe. You do not have the protection of attending a well organised and safe event. Parents and guardians are urged to think carefully about whether these sorts of events are where you want your children to go.”
"Extra officers will be on duty tonight across London and this will continue throughout the weekend."
Incursions With No Disorder
Should there be an incursion into your premises which is not disorderly and police are requested to attend it should be stressed that this is likely not to be a criminal trespass.
The expectations of the officers attending will be to witness a representative of the premises request those trespassing to leave, whilst in the presence and hearing of the officer.
If asked to assist in the ejection of these persons, police are acting as an agent of the company and have no more powers and privileges than that of an ordinary member of the public.
The officer(s) are there to standby and prevent a breach of the peace whilst the representative of the store asks the person(s) to leave.
Police will escort store / company staff and the person concerned out onto public land.
If there are criminal offences apparent then officers will deal with these as they would in any normal situation.
Policing With Disorder
Legislation exists under Section 68, Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994 in the event of direct action to disrupt the normal operation of the premises.
This is called Aggravated Trespass.
The senior officer present may seek to use powers but will look to the store manager / representative to support this process by providing confirmation of what business if any is being affected and a willingness to provide a statement and attend court if necessary.
We also request that any CCTV in relation to the incursion be provided at the earliest opportunity.
In practice the store manager or person able to make a decision on behalf of the store has to be willing and able to state in the presence of the person(s) that they reasonably believe that the person(s) are trespassing on private property and that they have acted or are acting in a manner which is disruptive to the normal business of this premises.
The exact nature of the disruption must be described.
Police officers will have access to detailed guidance and exact wording to help your staff and will be there at all times to support them in such incidents.
Crime Prevention Advice
You can help to protect your premises by taking a few sensible precautions.
The following points are a list of considerations and are by no means exhaustive.
1. Premises should be suitably staffed with a prominent management presence that can make themselves identifiable to police. Security Officers, where possible, should have a visible presence on the premises.
2. In the days leading up to an event ensure all staff are fully briefed. All staff should remain vigilant and report and suspicious activity to security and / or the police.
3. Consider minimising the number of entry points to your building. Ensure that the building perimeters are clear of debris, dustbins, ladders, or loose tools and equipment.
4. Check that your emergency equipment, grab bags, first aid supplies and radio communications.
5. Ensure that CCTV coverage is fully operational and can provide the highest quality recording resolution as possible.