UK police officer cleared over G20 death

2012-07-19 17:47

London - A British jury has cleared a police officer of manslaughter over the death of a newspaper vendor during the G20 (Group of 20) demonstrations in 2009.

Officer Simon Hardwood had said he used reasonable force when he hit 47-year-old Ian Tomlinson with a baton and shoved him to the ground as the vendor tried to find his way out of the cordon put up to contain protests in central London.

Tomlinson collapsed and died moments afterward. Footage of the incident helped turn his case into a rallying point for those who alleged that police brutalised demonstrators.

Tomlinson's family sobbed in the public gallery at London's Southwark Crown Court after the verdict was read.
Britain's police watchdog has said that Harwood will face internal disciplinary proceedings from Metropolitan Police later this year.