Page last updated Saturday 10th April 2014 at 0850hrs
On 20th September, 2011 Tony Ramsden attended his first-ever football match at Elland Road, Leeds. He had been provided with 4 tickets for a cup match against Manchester Utd by a business colleague.
Making up Tony’s party were his 14 year old daughter, Chloe (both pictured above), another Wakefield businessman Andrew Casey and his 15 year old son, Tom. It was to be a great occasion spoiled by two separate police assaults on Tony after the match. This happy family party found themselves being pushed by police from a safe vantage point in McDonald’s car park almost opposite the stadium into a hail of bricks and bottles.
The first assault on Tony was an Ian Tomlinson-style baton stike across his back as he walked away from the police lines. The police serial that made the unprovoked attack was led by PS Gary Fretwell, himself the prime suspect. Fretwell claimed he couldn’t identify the constituents of that serial despite the fact they were all wearing NATO helmets with large numbers and letters printed on them. You couldn’t make it up.
The second ‘welcome to Elland Rd’ police assault was when a police horse ridden by PC Marie Lawrenson was driven into him crushing him against a fence and treading on his foot.
Tony went to Holbeck police station the following day to complain. Whilst there he was told by a male Chief Inspector, whom 16 months later West Yorkshire Police have still refused to identify: ‘We are the police and I’m telling you this complaint is going nowhere. You are wasting your time and ours’. Just like that!
Well, Chief Inspector Roger Essell your ducking and dodging days are over. uPSD have exposed enough of your colleagues as dishonest and more than prepared to cover up for you and it is time to move in with the formal complaint against you.
That complaint against Essell will, no doubt, be followed closely by the 1,000′s of Leeds Utd fans who have generously joined the search for evidence. They will also be a marking of your card by 20,000+ Elland Rd football fans who know that you can’t be trusted to be civil and partial if a complaint is brought just along the road to your police station.
Nothwithstanding the inappropriateness of Chief Inspector Essell’s pronouncement, there was no way of knowing how propitious those words would be. Tony has filed an Application for Judicial Review of an IPCC Appeal decision at Leeds High Court. It was submitted on Friday 28th December 2012 and West Yorkshire Police have filed no Defence to the action.
There has also been a further assault on Tony during a visit to Wood Street, Wakefield police station for the purpose of attempting to further persuade the police to release the CCTV footage concerning the Elland Road assaults. The police have so far refused all entreaties, including from Tony’s solicitors, to release the footage. After 45 mins patiently waiting for attention, Tony was forcibly ejected by man-mountain PC Sabir Mechbal.
If any football fan can give us information regarding police use of CCTV at this fixture to prosecute football fans we would be grateful. Also collateral information on the gobby Chief Inspector Essell would be similarly useful, particularly if you have suffered partiality or incivility at his doing. Emailinfo@upsd.co.uk in complete confidence.
A meeting between Tony and the Police & Crime Commissioner took place on 28th February 2013. During the course of the discussions it became abundantly clear that Mark Burns-Williamson has allowed himself to be completely duped by the Professional Standards Department of West Yorkshire Police, and the Chief Constable. Nothing new there, then.
It transpires that the CCTV produced to the WYOPCC was different to that shown to Tony Ramsden, and even different to that viewed by the IPCC when they determined Mr Ramsden’s latest Appeal into a second, hopelessly corrupt, police investigation. This means a huge climb-down for the hapless and hopeless Commissioner as he has had to admit that he did not read Mr Ramsden’s comprehensive evidence submission, before cancelling the original meeting scheduled for 6th December, and attempting to close the case. He was just happy to take the word of the police and leave it at that. Forgetting that he was elected to protect the interests of the public – and not be the police nodding-dog that marked his ill-starred tenure as West Yorkshire Police Authority Chairman.
A request was to be made to the Force, by WYOPCC, to produce the CCTV film from the camera positions identified by Mr Ramsden’s own investigations (and repeatedly concealed by West Yorkshire Police) that will finally prove, beyond any doubt, that Tony was assaulted: Which will mark the beginning of a renewed complaints process against the likes of Fretwell, Lawrenson, Thackray, Essell and the terminally dishonest paedophile friend, DI Damian Carr, who has been trapped on audio tape repeatedly lying and has been concealer-in-chief of the material CCTV film.
The question is will the recently retired Carr (end of March) just laugh at the thought of sanction from the Commissioner and his Chief Executive, Fraser Sampson, just as he did during the Danny Major miscarriage of justice investigation three years ago. We will watch with interest as that appears to be very much the case, so far. Since the meeting there has been the regular WYOPCC attempt to falsify meeting notes and Mark Burns-Williamson has broken the two promises he made to Tony Ramsden during the discussions. Fortunately, that meeting was covertly taped by Tony despite protestations by the Commissioner that the meeting was conducted on the “basis of trust”. Unfortunately, for PCC Burns-Williamson, too many people know he can’t be trusted as far as you can throw him.
The first promise was to get back to Tony ‘within a couple days’ of the meeting regarding the undisclosed CCTV. The second promise was a further meeting within two weeks to answer the 12 public interest questions that Tony left with WYOPCC. The answers to those questions will expose more deception and double-dealing by the Commissioner and he is plainly uncomfortable about being exposed further for what he is – and what he stands for. Those questions are reproduced here and readers can judge for themselves.
On 8th May 2013 Tony received a letter from Mark Burns Williamson which bluntly stated there would be no further correspondence and the matter “was concluded” without production of the CCTV which he now claims “doesn’t exist”. It was also discovered that DI Carr’s retirement had been very temporary. He left as a police officer on 28th March 2013 and morphed over the Bank Holiday weekend into a civilian Freedom of Information officer.
A Leeds High Court hearing on 24th May Tony Ramsden was given permission by HH Judge Shaun Spencer QC to apply to have a Substantive Hearing into specific failings of the IPCC and police investigations. These mainly concerned the failure by the police to take statements from independent witnesses and the IPCC’s failure to uphold Tony’s second appeal on that basis. Up and coming London barrister Georgina Wolfe represented the IPCC. The police were not present at Court. A full report by the Yorkshire Post’s Rob Parsons can be read by clicking here.
The Substantive Hearing took place on 13th September 2013 at Leeds High Court, before Deputy High Court Judge Stephen Morris and, after a session lasting almost five hours, the outcome of the case was reserved by Judge Morris.
The judgement was eventually handed down by the Judge at a farcical hearing on 12th December, 2013. Despite finding failings of dishonesty not only of the police investigation, but in the IPCC appeal assessment, the judge refused to quash the IPCC’s decision. The matter has now travelled on to the Court of Appeal in London where a decision is awaited on a Permission Appeal.
Shortly after the hearing Mr Ramsden made further complaints against police officers involved in the investigation of the complaints concerning issues that had arisen from the Court proceedings. This has turned into another quite extraordinary chapter that can be viewed in fully clicking here which will take you on to the uPSD page that features one of the IPCC’s Rogue Officers dealing with the case.
The outfall from the publication of the IPCC’s Appeal made the front page of the Yorkshire Post which you can read by clicking here.