It’s been revealed UK police smashed in the window an individual’s car and arrested him after he was wrongly accused of concealing drugs, as he was travelling home from conducting an interview with Channel 4 news about his experiences of institutional police racism, and having been aggressively stopped and searched a mere six days prior.
On the morning of 23rd May, film location scout Ryan Colaco was driving through Northumberland Park, North London, was “aggressively tailgated” by Metropolitan Police – upon stopping, officers ran to his car and banged loudly on the window, claiming they’d smelled cannabis emanating from the vehicle.
As he calmly asked why he’d been stopped, Colaco, was violently forced into handcuffs in his seat, before exiting while officers searched him and the car – nothing was found. A recording he made of the incident was posted to Twitter and circulated widely, prompting shock and outrage among other users, and catching the attention of Channel 4 News, who invited him to discuss his experiences.
In all, he’s been stopped and searched around 20 times over the course of his adult life, but doesn’t have a criminal record – although he faces the possibility of a court hearing for charges of obstructing a drugs search, which occurred as he travelled back home following the interview 29th May.
— Ryan Colaço (Ryan C™) #Arsenal #BlackLivesMatter (@Ryan_Colaco) June 3, 2020
He was stopped at about 4.30pm by City of London police, near Cannon Street station – as he questioned why City of London police officers wanted to search him, after they alleged he was “dashing stuff up in his waistband”, footage shows his window was smashed in.
“There were two officers at first – within minutes I was surrounded. It was a very intimidating situation. Clearly nothing was dashed in my waistband. My safety was not taken into consideration when they broke that window. I told him I would come out, but just didn’t want to be put in handcuffs,” he told The Guardian.
Officers hauled him from his car and forced him to the ground, hitting his head against the floor before he was thrown face-first against a wall, Colaco said, causing him severe headaches. He was handcuffed, drug-tested, taken to the station and strip-searched before spending hours in a cell. He was finally released about 12 hours after the incident occurred, with nothing having been found on his person or in his vehicle.
Subsequently, he was forced to walk a mile at about 5am to retrieve his car, which had been impounded. In a bitter irony, during the walk he was approached by yet more police officers, who stopped their vehicle to ask why he was out on the street. It was not until 9.30am he managed to retrieve his car.
“When the officer drove my car out, I saw there was still glass everywhere. I had my head in my hands. They said they won’t clean the glass or pay for the window and my car was trashed too. The fact this all happened as I was coming back from an interview about getting stopped - you couldn’t make it up,” Colaco added.
“On Friday 29 May 2020, at approximately 4.30pm on Cannon Street in the City of London, a man, 30, was arrested for obstructing/resisting a constable in the execution of their duty, after he failed to comply with directions from officers regarding a drugs search. He has since been released under investigation,” a spokesperson for City of London Police said.