Over 600 Kids Subject To “Traumatising” Strip-Search By London Cops: Data. Over a two-year period, the under-fire police force in London conducted strip searches on more than 600 minors, the majority of whom were black males, according to new statistics revealed on Monday.
After getting the numbers from the Metropolitan police, England’s commissioner for children, Rachel de Souza, said she was “very startled” by the findings.
Over 600 Kids Subject To “Traumatising” Strip-Search By London Cops: Data. De Souza’s request comes after the largest police force in Britain was compelled to apologize in March over the “Child Q” case, which has led to an investigation into four officers for serious misconduct.
In 2020, female cops conducted a strip search on a 15-year-old black schoolgirl after mistakenly believing she was carrying marijuana even though they were aware she was menstruating.
In 23% of the incidents discovered by de Souza, she was searched without a “appropriate adult” present, and neither was.
Between 2018 and 2020, she discovered, 650 kids between the ages of 10 and 17 were subjected to strip searches by Met officers.
More than 95% of the 650 were boys, and the officer identified 58 percent of them as black.
De Souza expressed “great worry” over the disparity in racial representation and suggested that Child Q might be a symptom of a larger “systemic problem around child protection” in the Met.
She noted that the numbers had increased significantly each year and demonstrated that many kids “are being subjected to this intrusive and traumatizing technique each year.”
A slew of instances involving officers have shaken the London Police in recent years, including one in which a member of the diplomatic security team was sentenced to prison for kidnapping, raping, and killing Sarah Everard.
Cressida Dick’s resignation as Met commissioner in February was due to a decline in public trust in the police.
The Metropolitan Police said it has already made measures “to ensure youngsters subject to intrusive searches are dealt with responsibly and respectfully” in response to de Souza’s findings.
It acknowledged that certain kids may be “vulnerable victims of exploitation” by drug dealers and gangsters.
Following criticism of the Met over the Child Q case and other occurrences, London mayor Sadiq Khan increased his criticism of the agency.
The number of body searches conducted without an adult present was “very alarming,” according to a representative for Khan.