24 August 2012
PSNI Chief Constable apologises for police raid on Sinn Féin Derry City Mayor's home
'On behalf of the Chief Constable, I unequivocally apologise for what took place at the Mayor’s home on 12 July'
THE PSNI Assistant Chief Constable has personally and unreservedly apologised on behalf of the Chief Constable to the Sinn Féin Mayor of Derry City and his family for a police raid on his home on 12 July.
Police units arrived at Councillor Kevin Campbell’s home allegedly in pursuit of people connected with the vigilante group ‘Republican Action Against Drugs’. Sinn Féin has consistently spoken out against RAAD and called on it to disband. Nevertheless, the Sinn Féin Mayor’s home was entered by a search party and a lap-top computer and three mobile phones taken away by PSNI officers.
Kevin Campbell said:
“There was a gap of almost four and a half and five hours between the police arriving at my door and entering my home. The ordinary constable on the ground who make the initial decision not to go in because he realised that it was wrong showed leadership.
“Someone else then made the decision from a distance to go ahead and search my home.”
That individual, Kevin said, has to be accountable for their actions and the consequent trauma caused to the Campbell family.
This week, PSNI Assistant Chief Constable Dave Jones and Chief Superintendent Stephen Martin visited Kevin and his wife to apologise.
“On behalf of the Chief Constable, I unequivocally apologise for what took place at the Mayor’s home on 12 July,” ACC Jones said.
“We are grateful for the grace and dignity with which the Mayor and his wife received our apology.”
The senior PSNI officer also apologised “for the length of time it has taken us to be in a position to issue this apology”.
He added that it is important that police are properly held to account “and for that reason we have decided to refer the matter to the Police Ombudsman's Office for independent investigation”.
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