An investigation of eight Metropolitan Police officers is being undertaken following repeated stop and searches of a 16-year-old boy.
The 16-year-old, who is black, was stopped and searched six times in five months across Tottenham and Statford in 2023. Each time the police took no further action.
The investigation has been launched by the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) after a mandatory referral from the Met in September 2023.
The allegations include that there were insufficient grounds for the stop and searches, racial profiling by the officers and an unreasonable use of force.
The IOPC said the teenager was told he was being searched on suspicion of drugs or theft and that he reportedly matched the descriptions of people involved in knife crime and robberies in the area.
Speaking to LBC News about stop and search, Alliance for Race Equality’s Jeremey Crook highlighted that it is ‘traumatising when you’re innocent.’
As reported by the BBC, the director of IOPC, Charmaine Arbouin stated ‘The concerning allegations raised in the complaint – which include racial profiling of a child and insufficient grounds for stopping and searching them six times in five months – are issues that we know disproportionately affect Black and other minority ethnic communities and erode public confidence in policing.’
Arbouin continued to say, ‘It’s therefore essential that we carry out an investigation – independent of the police – to look at each of these incidents and the actions and decision-making of the officers involved. We will continue to keep those involved updated as our investigation progresses.’
The IOPC has explained that the investigation will not necessarily result in disciplinary proceedings.