Hundreds Of Protesters Take To Streets Of Cardiff After 24-Year-Old Dies Following Night In Custody

Hundreds Of Protesters Take To Streets Of Cardiff After 24-Year-Old Dies Following Night In Custody

January 13, 2021

Yesterday, January 12, more than 300 people took to the streets of Cardiff's city centre in protest after a 24-year-old man passed away after being released from police custody.

Mohamud Mohammed Hassan had been arrested at his home in Cardiff on suspicion of breach of the peace, but was released at 8:30am the following morning without charge. Mr. Hassan passed away just hours later and his family are alleging he was assaulted while in custody.

Hassan's aunt Zainab Hassan told BBC Wales, "He was released on Saturday morning with lots of wounds on his body and lots of bruises. He didn't have these wounds when he was arrested and when he came out of Cardiff Bay police station, he had them."

South Wales Police have released a statement claiming they have found no evidence of excessive force and a police watchdog has said that initial tests have shown that Hassan did not die of any injuries.

The Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) are now investigating and are currently awaiting the results of a toxicology report. According to Catrin Evans, the IOPC's director for Wales, their investigation would focus on Mr. Hassan's arrest, the journey in a police van to custody and his time at Cardiff Bay police station.

She said the IOPC will be "urgently examining the extensive relevant CCTV footage and body-worn video" and would be speaking to the officers involved as well as witnesses who saw his arrest on Friday evening and his movements the next day after leaving custody."

She added: "I send my condolences to Mr. Hassan's family and friends, and to everyone affected by his sad death.

"We are aware of concerns being expressed and questions being asked about use of force by police officers. We will look carefully at the level of force used during the interaction and I would urge people show patience while our inquiries, which will take some time, are made."

Words: James Keith
Photography: Hashim Al-Hashmi