Search

London riots: Police stop and search blamed for tension that sparked Tottenham riots

18:02 10 August 2011

Riot police form a line in Tottenham.

Riot police form a line in Tottenham.

PA Wire/Press Association Images

Police use of stop and search powers and escalating tension with the youth community are said to have been at the root of the Tottenham riots.

Unprecedented violence erupted at the heart of Tottenham when a peaceful protest about the police shooting of Mark Duggan turned violent.

The dead man was well known among Tottenham’s youth community and anger over his death is blamed for the violence in Tottenham - unlike more wanton looting and violence that spread across London afterwards.

A 19-year-old man from Broadwater Farm Estate in Tottenham said: “I grew up with him, it’s like my elder brother and the police killed him for no reason it looks like right now. It’s got us thinking - the same thing they’ll do it to us. They’re killing one of our main men. We’re not happy with all that’s going on right now.”

Anger about the lack of information reaching Mark Duggan’s family in the 48 hours after his death led to a peaceful demonstration.

But as night fell the mood turned angry as protestors turned on police, setting buildings alight and looting shops.

A tense relationship between some sections of Tottenham’s youth community and police had already inflamed tensions, it was claimed.

Community leaders and young people spoke of disproportionate use of stop and search powers on young black men as a cause of resentment.

A 51-year-old builder named as Danny, who lives on the Chesnut Estate in Tottenham, said: “It was triggered by the police really. They terrorise the boys in the area for no obvious reasons. They stop them and search them, it’s bullying really. You see them upset. ‘What the police man just scold me about?’.”

Others defended the police taking necessary action to stop crime and protect lives.

Cordel Robinson, 20, of the Save Haringey Youth Services campaign, who lives in Edmonton, said: “If they don’t search those people and one of them had a knife and stabbed someone, the reaction would be they’re not doing enough stop and search. The police do more than the average stop and search to save lives. If you don’t want to be stopped don’t wear the stuff you wear.”

The loss of youth clubs and facilities for young people, and the roll out of cuts in deprived Tottenham has also left teenagers disenfranchised.

A man called Gary, from Broadwater Farm Estate, said: “There’s nothing for the kids to do anymore. They’re talking about all these cuts and cuts and cuts. When they’re talking about problems and something for the kids to do, they ain’t got no answers.”

Latest News Stories

Haringey Mayor Cllr Kaushika Amin with talent show winner Zoe Hutchings.

X-Factor finalist Andy Abraham helped introduce Haringey’s next wave of musical stars to the world at a special fundraising night organised by the Mayor of Haringey.

Mon, 09:58
Bilel Ayadi seen on CCTV walking along the street the night he was harmed

Police are desperately trying to work out how an Algerian man came to be found half naked and close to death in Hackney with mysterious burns on his body.

Friday, March 27, 2015
Some of the food Chicken Town will offer (Pic: Kickstarter/Chicken Town)

Chicken-loving youngsters in a deprived borough of north London may soon be able to buy healthy fried chicken, if two restaurateurs get the start-up capital they need.

Thursday, March 26, 2015
In six weeks, the borough will go to the polls Pic: PA

The election campaign officially starts at the end of March – but the battle for hearts, minds and votes started long ago. Political editor Annabelle Dickson sets out her guide

Most read news

Competitions

Vroom! You could be emmersed in the action at the MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship.

The MCE Insurance British Superbike Championship fires into Brands Hatch on 17/18/19 April for one of the most anticipated seasons in recent years as 39 riders are set for two fierce contests on the 1.2 mile Indy circuit.

Munch on a tasy three course dinner at The Refinery!

“Where to go for a drink near Great Portland Street?” was previously met with blank expressions and shrugs for those local to the area, not anymore, thanks to the opening of The Refinery at Regent’s Place, the eighth bar and restaurant from hugely-successful group Drake & Morgan.

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Tottenham Journal e-edition today E-edition
Family Notices 24


Our trusted business finder