A 20-year old black man died after being thrown to the ground and left unable to breathe by police on Kingsland Road in Dalston, London on Saturday.

The whole incident has been captured on CCTV in the shop into which the man ran, trying to escape the police. The footage shows the man, Rashan Charles, struggling to draw breath as he is held on the floor by police.

He apparently swallowed something before the police caught up with him, creating an obvious risk of choking, but the officers didn’t seem to care about this as they threw him to the floor, impeding his ability to breathe.

This is one of countless examples, both in Britain and the USA, in which police officers have used astonishing violence which results in death, especially against young black men. The individuals responsible are never punished, and even worse, the institution of the police which monopolises the use of violence in society and uses it with impunity, is never held to account.

This wouldn’t have happened if the police were accountable to the community they’re supposed to protect. Instead they’re centralised into a weapon of the state as defenders of a system with violence and racism in its DNA.

We want to see those responsible for Rashan’s death punished. We demand community policing, with officers accountable to working class people, the 99%. Trade unions and other workers’ organisations should be the ones controlling the police, not a Tory government acting in the interests of the 1%.

We demand justice for Rash.

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