Officer ‘made example’ of man at G20 protests

The police officer accused of killing Ian Tomlinson was “making an example of him” when he struck him with a baton and pushed him to the ground, a court has heard.

Southwark Crown Court was read a statement yesterday from American businessman Christopher La Jaunie, who filmed Pc Simon Harwood hitting the 47-year-old.

Mr Tomlinson died on the fringes of the G20 protests in London in April 2009.

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He was facing away from police officers when he was hit, and walked 70 metres before he collapsed and later died.

Prosecutor Mark Dennis QC read Mr La Jaunie’s statement, which said: “Mr Tomlinson was not posing any threat to the officers prior to this, or aggravating them.

“I had the impression that the officer was making an example of him.”

The businessman came forward with his footage after Mr Tomlinson’s family appealed for information, the court heard.

Initially a pathologist found he had died of natural causes, having suffered a heart attack, but later reports suggested internal injuries led to his death.

Mr La Jaunie said Mr Tomlinson was “bumping along” the line of officers, trying to get through.

He said: “I didn’t see him as a protester, I had the impression that he was just intoxicated and a bit out of sorts, just trying to get home.”

Harwood, 45, from Carshalton in Surrey, denies manslaughter and maintains that he used reasonable force.

The trial continues.