Romford police detective denies beating teenager with baton during Gidea Park stop and search
PUBLISHED: 16:46 11 November 2019 | UPDATED: 16:46 11 November 2019
PA/Press Association Images
A police detective has denied assaulting a teenager with his baton after footage of his conduct during a stop and search in Gidea Park went viral on social media.
Det Con Kevin Rowley appeared at Westminster Magistrates' Court on Monday, November 11 charged with assaulting a teenager by beating him.
The court heard how Det Con Rowley stopped a 17-year-old in Heath Park Road on April 22 and that he hit the teenager with his baton when he refused to comply with the search.
Video footage posted on social media appeared to show Det Con Rowley repeatedly striking a black teenager in handcuffs while the boy shouts: "I am a child... this is illegal. You can't do this."
Police said the incident had occurred following the arrest of a young man on suspicion of possession of class B drugs.
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Det Con Rowley, of Southend in Essex, was released on bail to attend Hendon Magistrates' Court for trial on January 23.
The Metropolitan Police confirmed that the officer, who is based at the East Area Command Unit, which covers the tri-borough area of Havering, Redbridge and Barking and Dagenham, was currently on restricted duties.
The incident was referred to the police watchdog, the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC).
Ken Marsh, chairman of the Metropolitan Police Federation, said its legal team will be "vigorously defending" Det Con Rowley in court.
He added: "What we can say is that in these testing times for Metropolitan Police officers, it is vital that there is not trial by social media - a short clip of an incident does not always tell the full story.
"And we would remind that everyone has a right to a fair trial."