Deaths of black men in custody pose challenge on ‘Stephen Lawrence level’

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source: The Guardian
published: 3 September 2017

The family of a black man who died after being restrained by police are launching a campaign this week for the officers involved to be suspended pending investigations.

The campaign, to be launched on Thursday by the family of Edson da Costa, comes as the Observer reveals worrying new witness accounts of incidents leading to the deaths of Da Costa and three other black men since June.

The campaign is adding to pressure on the Home Office to publish immediately the results of an independent inquiry into deaths in custody and racial disproportionality amid allegations that the home secretary, Amber Rudd, is sitting on its findings.

The men’s deaths have created the “biggest challenge since the Stephen Lawrence inquiry” to the criminal justice system, according to one anti-racism campaigner.

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