Four Metropolitan police officers have been cleared of any misconduct over the death of an 18 year old man, Henry Hicks in 2014.
Henry Hicks died when his moped collided with a minicab down Wheelwright Street, Islington, in December 2014.
An inquest has found that he was fleeing two unmarked police cars – a Metropolitan Police disciplinary panel ruled that the four police officers involved were not technically in a police pursuit at the time of the incident.
According to the BBC, Hicks was also found to be carrying multiple bags of cannabis, three mobile phones and “had been stopped and searched at least 71 times between 2011 and 2014”.
The Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) had previously recommended that the Metropolitan Police officers involved faced disciplinary action after they engaged in a pursuit without proper authorisation.
The Metropolitan Police has said: “the officers involved worked on a unit targeting theft by suspects of pedal cycles and mopeds.”
The case regarding Henry Hicks shines light on a new crime epidemic which has swept across London – moped muggers.
Can the police actively engage in moped pursuits?
With an increase in moped theft and moped gang activity, police are unable to pursue criminals riding a moped or vehicle alike because they would be responsible for any injury caused.
It has been reported that the thugs involved in such crime, take their helmets off during pursuits knowing the police cannot use manoeuvres or any other road tactics to apprehend them.
The Shadow Minister of Policing, Louise Haigh has said: “we need to have confidence that the police will enforce the law. The police need to have the confidence that the law itself allows them to do so.”
— Tollington Police (@MPSTollington) October 17, 2017
The latest figures by the Met show that over 15,000 motorcycle, moped, and scooters were stolen in London last year – this figure accounts for half the vehicles stolen in London.
According to the Met, in the 12 months leading up to the end of June, they logged 16, 158 involving mopeds and vehicles alike, in comparison to last years figure of 5,145.
Most offences logged by the Met were robbery and theft. Mobile phones made up 90% of items stolen.
Words: Joshua Hornsey | Subbing: Charlotte Racher