Four British police officers guilty of leaving black man brain dead and paralysed after beating

PCs: Nicholas Oats, Sanjeev Kalyan, Hannah Ross and Sgt. Andrew Withey beat and left a black man for dead before falsifying evidence

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Four police officers involved in brutally beating a black male in annattack that left him paralysed and brain-dead have been found guilty, but won’t face criminal sentences, only professional misconduct discipline.


Mr. Julian Cole was involved in an argument with door men outside the former Elements nightclub in Bedford, England.


Three officers and a Sergent were found to have made false statements about their involvement in Mr Cole’s beating and death.


Another failed to “react” when Mr Cole said his neck hurt… it had been broken by the officers.


Sports science student Mr Cole, then aged just 20, had gone to the nightclub on 5 May 2013 for a night out with friends, but was ejected through a side door.


He was then refused a refund by door staff and a verbal argument began, leading to staff calling the police at 01:34 GMT on 6 May.


Mr Cole was tackled to the ground by a bouncer, before standing back up, the hearing was told.


He was then “taken to the ground” by PC Nicholas Oates, PC Sanjeev Kalyan and PC Hannah Ross at 01:48 before being cuffed with “his face down on the ground”.


Mr Cole was stamped on, kicked and punched by the officers. It is not clear if batons were used.


The officers then lifted him from the ground, and he was taken via a police van to the police station.


At 02:02 PC Ross called an ambulance, and paramedics arrived at the police station and commenced CPR on Mr Cole, who was not breathing. Thirty minutes later he was taken to hospital where broken vertebra in his neck were discovered.


The panel found that PC Ross “entirely made up her account” of Mr Cole moving his leg onto the police van’s bench seat while being taken to the police station.


This was done in an “attempt to demonstrate she had taken Mr Cole’s report of neck pain seriously when she had not”, the panel said.


The hearing was also told that PC Kalyan tried to “shift responsibility” over what happened to the student, and the panel found he had also made a false account.


PC Oates had also made statements which he knew were not true regarding Mr Cole being moved to the police van.


PCs Ross, Kalyan and Oates “did not ask any basic questions concerning his welfare”.


However, the panel added this was “most unlikely to have changed the outcome for [Mr Cole]”.


The panel also said that Sgt Andrew Withey failed to make “any enquiry” when PC Ross asked whether Mr Cole should go directly to hospital or custody, and failed to “react” to hearing Mr Cole say his neck hurt.


PCs Ross, Kalyan and Oates were found guilty of gross misconduct, while Sgt Withey was found guilty of misconduct.


The PCs were found to have breached standards of honesty, while all four were found by the misconduct panel in Stevenage, just north of London, to have breached standards of duties and responsibilities.


An allegation against PC Ross concerning the force she allegedly used with the handcuffs was found not proven nor disproven.


It is alleged that PC Ross murdered Mr Cole by stamping on his neck. Again this allegation was not taken to criminal trial.


The Independent Office for Police Conduct referred its findings of an earlier investigation to the Crown Prosecution Service, which decided that no criminal conduct had occurred.


A small number of minor protests occurred in London calling for the police officers’ arrests.

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About the Author

Caleb Simmons
Caleb Simmons | Journalist Since: 2003 | New York - Abu Dhabi - London - Barcelona