Police officer denies assaulting handcuffed man after traffic stop

A police officer delivered an “elbow strike to the head area” of a man sitting on the ground with his hands cuffed behind his back following a traffic stop, a court has been told.

Pc Charlie Thompson, of Essex Police, went to help his colleagues after they stopped a Volkswagen Golf driver on suspicion of using a mobile phone behind the wheel on January 19.

There was a scuffle before the motorist, Zeki Badruddin, was handcuffed on the verge beside the A127 in Basildon and arrested on suspicion of assaulting an emergency worker, Colchester Magistrates’ Court was told, with police using Pava spray.

Mr Badruddin was not prosecuted.

When Thompson, 25, arrived at the scene at 11.41am, Mr Badruddin was already in cuffs and seated, prosecutor Micaila Williams said.

She said: “A number of officers were deployed to the scene.

“By the time the defendant arrived, the incident appeared to have de-escalated.”

She said Thompson began “by saying, ‘All right, mate?’ and asking his (Mr Badruddin’s) name”.

Miss Williams said the officer unnecessarily put “his hand firmly on the right-hand shoulder” of Mr Badruddin.

When Mr Badruddin “turns and asks him what he’s doing”, the officer “takes him to the ground”, Miss Williams said.

She said the defendant told Mr Badruddin to “get on the ground”, adding: “You’ve just assaulted an officer – we’re not having any of this.”

Miss Williams said Thompson delivered an “elbow strike to the head area” of Mr Badruddin.

She said the officer later pushed Mr Badruddin to the ground for a second time.

Mr Badruddin told the court he chipped a tooth during the alleged assault.

He said: “There was no reason for anyone to be coming near me.

“I was sitting down. I couldn’t move. I wasn’t being aggressive to anyone.

“I was having a conversation with a couple of officers in front of me.”

Mr Badruddin said he “still feels very anxious now seeing the police”.

Andrew McGee, defending, suggested Mr Badruddin’s legs were not restrained at the time.

Mr Badruddin said: “They were – I had knee straps on and ankle straps.”

Mr McGee said the “fact Mr Badruddin wasn’t prosecuted is neither here nor there – it’s irrelevant”.

After the incident was flagged, Thompson was put on restricted duties and a mandatory referral was made to the Independent Office for Police Conduct, Essex Police said.

Thompson, of Dedham Road, Boxted, denies one count of assault by beating.

The trial continues.