South Yorkshire police have launched a ‘full and open’ investigation after a 16-year-old boy was allegedly hit on head by an officer following Barnsley V Sheffield last Saturday.
Footage on social media showed the boy was left with blood pouring from his head wound after claims that police struck him. It has been watched by hundreds of thousands of people prompting public concern over police methods.
South Yorkshire police have referred this matter to the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC).
Chief Superintendent and Match Commander, Sarah Poolman, said: “A full, open investigation, including extended video footage, will take place to ascertain the circumstances surrounding the incident, including the actions that led to a 16-year-old boy sustaining a head injury from an officer’s baton and an officer being assaulted, sustaining injuries to his stomach and head.
“The 16-year-old boy was taken to hospital by ambulance. The police officer also attended hospital. Both of their injuries are not life-threatening.”
South Yorkshire Police will not make further comment until IOPC issues a decision.
Louise Haigh, Sheffield Heeley MP, and Shadow Policing Minister that it is important incidents like these are thoroughly investigated.
She said: “The police do a difficult job at football matches up and down the country. This video and incident has understandably caused deep public concern in Sheffield and the wider area, and a referral should be made to the IOPC.
“It is right in order to uphold public confidence, that the incident now be investigated entirely independently of South Yorkshire Police.”
Assistant Chief Constable, Lauren Poultney, has appealed for more footage and witnesses for the ‘wider disorder’.
The boy’s mother has declined to make any comment now.
In the footage, the boy’s mum cried and shouted at the officer in anger: “What are you doing, you f***ing idiot!.” The boy huddled up in the ground, covering his head injury.