by New Worker correspondent
THE INQUEST into the sudden death of Ian Tomlinson two years ago after he was pushed over by a police officer at the G20 protests in London last Tuesday delivered a verdict of unlawful killing.
Tomlinson was not involved in the protests; he was making his way home from work as a news vendor and walking through the area where police and protesters were gathered.
The 47-year-old collapsed and died after he was hit by a baton and pushed to the ground by Pc Simon Harwood at the protests in London on 1st April 2009.
The events were captured on film by protesters and sent to the press.
His family said the verdict was a “huge relief”, while the Crown Prosecution Service could reopen criminal proceedings against Pc Harwood.
The officer said after the verdict he had not intended to push him over. The jury decided Pc Harwood acted illegally, recklessly and dangerously, and used “excessive and unreasonable” force in striking Tomlinson.
Pathologist Dr Freddy Patel told the inquest that Mr Tomlinson died of a heart attack but the jury favoured the evidence of a number of experts who said he died of internal bleeding.
During evidence, the family’s lawyer Matthew Ryder QC said Pc Harwood had told “half truths” and “deliberately painted a false picture of Mr Tomlinson”.
Outside the hearing, Tomlinson’s step-son Paul King said the family hoped manslaughter charges would be brought against Pc Harwood.
Paul King said: “After two years, we’re really grateful that the inquest process has made a strong statement about how Ian died.”