A police officer is under criminal investigation after ramming into a moped rider who was left with serious head injuries and broken bones.
The unnamed officer struck the scooter to deliberately stop the 17-year-old youth riding dangerously in Erith, southeast London, in November last year.
The teenager, who was not wearing a helmet at the time, was taken to hospital with serious head injuries and fractures but was later discharged.
The officer is believed to be the only one so far to face criminal investigation after using the controversial “tactical contact” measure, whereby police in cars knock a suspect off their moped or scooter, so they can be arrested.
Police watchdog the Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC), which is investigating the incident, is due to make a decision soon on whether to submit a file of evidence to the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) and to Scotland Yard.
If the IOPC recommends a prosecution, it would then be up to CPS bosses to decide whether or not to press charges against the officer, which could include actual bodily harm and grievous bodily harm.
The Met would also make a decision on whether the matter amounted to a misconduct allegation, which could result in the officer leaving the force.
The IOPC is also investigating a second tactical contact case involving another Metropolitan Police officer, which featured an adult moped rider in Ealing earlier this year.
The government is backing new legal protections for officers, and the Metropolitan Police said it targets moped criminals “even when they ride dangerously, discard their helmets and disguise themselves in the belief that this will prevent pursuit and their capture”
We recently posed the hypothetical question; is this tactic legal? It may well be that we are about to get an answer.